Frequently Asked Questions


FAQ Registering / Login

Why do I need to register?
By registering it allows us to keep in touch with you and advise you of any CoastKZN news or updates.
How do I register as a user for CoastKZN? 
1. Please click on the LOGIN/REGISTER button in the top right hand corner of the page.

2. Click on "Register Here".
3. Populate the required fields.
4. Agree to the Terms & Conditions (you can read these by clicking on the "Terms & Conditions" link).
5. Click "Register".
6. CoastKZN will confirm your registration.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How do I log in as a user for CoastKZN?
1. Please click on the LOGIN/REGISTER button in the top right hand corner of the page.

2. If you are a registered user then fill in your login details and click "Log in" (tick "Remember Me?" for CoastKZN to store your details)
3. Alternatively click "Register Here".

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How do I change my password or edit my CoastKZN profile page?
On the top right-hand corner of any page, between the "Welcome' message and "Logout" option, you will find the option "Profile" which will direct you to your profile page. (Remember: You can only access your profile information once you have registered and logged in with your account)

Once you are on your profile page, you are able to edit or add on information about yourself within the fields provided.
  • If you would like to change your email address please send us a query through the "Contact Us" page. There is a link to direct you to the "Contact Us" page on your profile page. (You can also find the "Contact Us" button in the top tab of every page.)
  • If you would like to change your password please select the "Change Password" option on your profile page. You can find this option above the "Area of Interest" field.
After adding on or editing any information please remember to Click on the "Save" button at the bottom of the profile page.

FAQ Navigating CoastKZN

Can I view CoastKZN on my mobile device?
Yes, you can view it on your mobile device. Just take note that with the amount of information and data that’s shared on CoastKZN, it is much easier to navigate through it all on a desktop/laptop. We are in the process of making the site more responsive to mobile users.
Does CoastKZN work better on certain browsers?
Yes, you may view CoastKZN in your preferred browser, however, the best browsers to view CoastKZN in are: Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.
Where can I find the sitemap or User Manual for CoastKZN?
At the bottom of every page you will find a tab with a link to the SITEMAP and USER MANUAL.
How do I search for information on a specific topic?
At the top of every page you will see a SEARCH menu, type a key word(s) relevant to the information you are looking for and click the SEARCH button. A list of results will be displayed falling under either CATEGORIES or MEDIA AND RESOURCES. Categories cover topics and information relating to specific coastal themes, while Media and Resources covers news, documents, governance topics and How Do I results.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How do I get back to the home page?
At the top of the page there is a menu bar, simply click on the HOME tab. Alternatively you can click on the CoastKZN logo in the top left corner of every page.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How can I contribute information or photos?
Click on the CONTRIBUTE tab on the top menu, alternatively you will see a CONTRIBUTE link from each topic that will take you to the contribute page.

The CONTRIBUTE information form is separated into 2 sections: "ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTION" and "ABOUT YOURSELF"

About the Contribution (About the information that you are contributing)
  1. "What do you want to contribute?": select the type of information you would like to share- data, which includes spatial data and metadata; photos; videos; documents; images or any other type of information you may have. You may select more than one category.
  2. "Please provide a general description": A short description of the information you are sharing (eg: "Sand pumping at Durban beachfront", see help video)
  3. "GPS reference data": if the information you are sharing is specific to an area please enter the GPS co-ordinates (if known), or drag the map location marker to the area of interest (see help video). If the information is more general please leave the marker as is.
  4. Date or Date Range": please provide the time or time period in which the information was created or obtained.
About Yourself (About you, the contributor)
  1. "Full Name (First name(s), Surname):": Fill in your full name and surname. If you would like the information you share with us to be used on CoastKZN, but would like your name to remain anonymous please add "(Anonymous)" after your name: eg "John Doe (Anonymous)"
  2. "Title": please enter your title: Dr, Mr, Mrs, Ms, Miss.
  3. "Contact Details": please provide your contact number and email so that we may get in touch with you. Your contact information will not be displayed on CoastKZN, unless you request for it to be.
  4. Would you like to be credited for this contribution by the same name and affiliation provided?": select the "YES: or "NO" options. If you select "YES" you permit us to use the information you have shared on CoastKZN. If your information is going to be used we will notify you beforehand. If you select "NO", your information will not be used on CoastKZN
  5. Upload file(s)": select the files you would like to upload and share with us.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

Where can I find definitions on terms or acronyms that I'm not familiar with?
At the bottom of every page, next to the Terms and Conditions you'll see two additional links, one called GLOSSARY and another called ACRONYMS.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

Why are there different colour buttons used on CoastKZN?
A button indicates a link and the colour indicates the type of link.
Contribute The light green button on the home page and individual theme pages inspires you to contribute information and takes you to the Contribute page.

PDF Document The dark green button links to PDF documents that will open up in a new page.

SEARCHThe light blue Search button can be found at the top of every page where you can search for keywords.

CoastKZN Links The dark blue button links to other internal pages on CoastKZN.

External Links The light purple button takes you to an external link outside of CoastKZN.

View on Map The dark purple button can be found on pages where a topic is discussed that links to spatial data that can be viewed on the interactive map.

FAQ About CoastKZN

What is a story map and how do I use it?
A Story Maps is an interactive tool used for presenting spatial data and related information in a user-friendly manner and explaining certain subjects through easy to understand visualisations. See steps below on how to use the story maps

The side panel on the left:
  1. Use this panel to gather information and to guide you through the topic presented
  2. Scroll up and down to move between different sections or use the dots on the far left to access different sections of the Story Map
  3. Keep an eye out for any highlighted text as it signals a link that will open a new map, photo or other documents
The display area on the right:
  1. Maps, photos and documents will be displayed here
  2. Use the zoom tools (top left corner of a map) or scroll wheel to explore a map
  3. Click and drag to pan around
  4. Click on a feature and more information will show in a popup
  5. Make use of the "LEGEND" (top right corner of map) to see each feature's display
  6. Use the "BACK" button to return to the original display on the right
Watch this video for more help HELP VIDEO
How do I share my nurdle sightings onto the Nurdle Public Contribution Story Map?
You can find the Nurdles Public Contributions Story Map under the "How to Contribute" tab on the NURDLES page. You can also find a link to the NURDLES page on the home page in the top Banner, in the Notices Panel on the right and in the bottom "Interactive Story Map" slider.

Once you have found the story map Click on "EXPLORE MAP & CONTRIBUTE". You will now find a map displayed in the left hand column. The white dots on the map represent contributions from the public of whether or not Nurdles have been sighted in those areas. Black points represent Nurdle drop off locations. You can zoom in or out to focus on specific areas. On the right of your screen you will notice a panel displaying photos of the contributions found within the area displayed on the map. By clicking on the photo you can view a short description of when, where and by who the sighting was reported.

If you would like to report whether or not you have sighted Nurdles please follow the steps below. Please take not that reports of areas with Nurdles "Absent" are just as valuable as reports of areas with Nurdles "Present".
  1. In the top right hand corner you will find a blue "CONTRIBUTE" button, please Click on it.
  2. Select or drag and drop a photo of the focus area where the Nurdles are present or absent.
  3. Enter a concise title including the location in the following format, eg: "Nurdles @ Blythedale Beach", or "No Nurdles @ Blythedale Beach".
  4. Enter your location by adding your co-ordinates (if known), or by using the location marker that appears on the map. Simply drag the location marker to the affected area.
  5. Enter a description of the state of the focus area. Please include the date, your name and email and/or contact number. Your contact details will remain private and will only be used by us to get in touch with you if needed and will not be displayed on CoastKZN. If you wish to remain anonymous please state anonymous in brackets next to your name.


Watch this video for more help HELP VIDEO
Where does all the information come from?
CoastKZN information is generated by the Coastal Zone and Estuaries research groups at ORI, and draws on data, information and scientific knowledge from a number of stakeholders and organisations. See the CONTRIBUTORS page.
What are the terms and conditions of using CoastKZN?
You'll find a link to the TERMS AND CONDITIONS page at the bottom of every page.
How do I get in touch?
In the menu bar at the top you'll find a link to the CONTACT US page. Here you can send us any queries or requests and we'll respond as soon as possible.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

FAQ Interactive Map

How do I locate a place or an address on the map?
Use the SEARCH bar at the top of the map , start typing an address or place name. A list of possible options will drop down from which you can choose the correct location that you're interested in. Click on it and it will zoom to that location.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How do I switch layers on or off?
Under the LAYERS tab on the left pane you can collapse or expand numerous folders. Use the checkbox to the left of a layer's name to check (turn on) or uncheck (turn off) an individual layer or a group of layers.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How do I change the background display of the map (basemap)?
The basemap can be changed by clicking on the BASEMAP drop-down button on the top-right corner of the map .

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

Where can I find more information on the data and where it comes from?
Under LAYERS, you can click on the menu button next to the layer that you're interested in and click on SHOW METADATA to display the description of the layer and the source of the data.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How do I use the search tool?
In the pane on the left under SEARCH you can select a searchable layer (only some layers are searchable) and use either the search by attribute or search by shape option. Search BY ATTRIBUTE: type a term relevant to the selected layer and field to search. Search BY SHAPE: select a buffer area within which the search should be contained and draw a shape (circle, rectangle, line, point, etc.) using the drawing tools provided. Once finished drawing, click SEARCH and the search results would be highlighted on the map and will display in an attribute table at the bottom. To clear the map from any searches click on CLEAR on the attribute table or close the attribute table. Alternatively any new search results can be added to the current search results.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How do I find an estuary on the map?
In the pane on the left under SEARCH you can select either the Estuary Extent or Estuarine Functional Zone layer and using the search by attribute you can search for an estuary name under the Estuary drop-down list. The estuary names are organised alphabetically. Once an estuary is chosen, click SEARCH and the estuary results would be highlighted on the map and will display in an attribute table at the bottom. To clear the map from any searches click on CLEAR on the attribute table or close the attribute table. Alternatively any new search results can be added to the current search results.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How do I use the identify tool?
Click on any icon or polygon (area) on the map to identify what layer it is and it's specific attributes in that location. If you have multiple layers switched on and only wish to identify features from one layer, go to the IDENTIFY tab in the left pane and select the visible layer that you are interested in or select ALL VISIBLE LAYERS (default).

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How do I use the measurement tool?
Choose to measure either an area size, a line or a location point and the units of measurement (e.g. kilometers, meters, miles, degrees, etc.). On the map draw your area / line / point to display the measurement results.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How can I add text or annotations to the map?
You can add any additional drawings or text to the map to personalize the map. In the pane on the left under DRAW you can add either points, circles, lines, polygons (areas) or text to the map. Once done any drawings can be removed from the map by clicking on the clear button .

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How do I save the map for printing?
On the pane to the left under SAVE you can export the map to various map formats (jpeg, pdf, eps, png, etc.). Here you can also set the quality to which the map should be saved and the units that the scalebar should be displayed in.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How can I add my own data / layers to the map to view alongside the existing layers?
On the pane to the left under DRAG AND DROP you can upload KML files, csv files, shapefiles or service urls or drag and drop them onto the map. These layers will then be shown at the top above all the other existing layers, but can be rearranged accordingly.

OR watch this HELP VIDEO.

How can I download the data?
Please CONTACT US if you're interested in obtaining any of the data.