Spatial is not Special: Managing Tracking Data in a Spatial Database

  • Ferdinando UrbanoEmail author
  • Mathieu Basille


A wildlife tracking data management system must include the capability to explicitly deal with the spatial properties of movement data. GPS tracking data are sets of spatiotemporal objects (locations), and the spatial component must be properly managed. You will now extend the database built in  Chaps. 2,  3 and  4, adding spatial functionalities through the PostgreSQL spatial extension called PostGIS. PostGIS introduces spatial data types (both vector and raster) and a large set of SQL spatial functions and tools, including spatial indexes. This possibility essentially allows you to build a GIS using the capabilities of relational databases. In this chapter, you will start to familiarise yourself with spatial SQL and implement a system that automatically transforms the GPS coordinates generated by GPS sensors from a pair of numbers into spatial objects.


PostGIS Spatial data GPS tracking Animal movement 


  1. Corti P, Mather SV, Kraft TJ, Park B (2014) PostGIS Cookbook. Packt Publishing LTD., Birmingham, UKGoogle Scholar
  2. Obe OR, Hsu LS (2011) PostGIS in action. Manning Publications Company, GreenwichGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Università Iuav di VeneziaVeniceItaly
  2. 2.Fort Lauderdale Research and Education CenterUniversity of FloridaFort LauderdaleUSA

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