GeoCAS Citizen Science.

Beach Quality

Beach Quality Mapping


Welcome to Beach Quality mapping in the Virgin Islands.

There are many ways to assess the quality of beaches. This map asks you to assess the beach you just swam at in terms of the color of the water, the amount of garbage and other debris you can find on the beach and in the woods behind the beach, how often you actually swim when you go to visit your beach, and then tell us how far you came to get to that particular beach.

The water color is a function of how much nutrients are in the water. Clear means low nutrients. Green means high nutrients. Brown usually means that it has recently rained and soil eroded from the uplands is coloring the water near the shore. This map will help identify were significant nutrient and erosion problems exist around our shores.

Garbage on or near the beach means that it is not being well cared for or the other users don't mind leaving their garbage behind or other people use the area to dump their garbage and don't care about the rest of the citizens who use the area. Sometimes large household objects wash up on shore or are left in the woods. This map will help identify areas that need to be cleaned up.

How often you swim when you visit a beach tells us if you think the beach is a good place to swim. Beaches have high bacteria counts after heavy rainfall and many public beaches are closed to protect public health. Where you came from tells us if you are a tourist, Islander, and if you are using your neighborhood beach. Color may vary depending on location and food available. The picture to the right shows a typical pattern for an adult.

To add a point to the map:

  • Navigate the map so you can clearly see the place where you want to place a point on the left hand side of the map.
  • Click on the icon with a pencil at the top left of the map window. Choose any of the icons in the window that appears.
  • Click on the map at the location you want to add a point.
  • Choose answers to the questions in the popup window by clicking on one of the options for each question.
  • Click somewhere else on the map to save the information. Click back on the point to add an image if you have one.
  • If you want to see what was entered for other points in the map you can click on them in the map.
  • If you are having trouble with the size of your screen you can open the map application in a new window by clicking here.