Pinyon-Juniper Woodland Mortality in Southwestern US 2000-2007

Aug 18, 2010 (Last modified Aug 19, 2010)
Recommended by Tosha Comendant
This dataset is a union of seven datasets created by the Merriam-Powell Center for Environmental Research (MPCER) at Northern Arizona University using data from a a United States Forest Service (USFS) aerial mapping project. The dataset was modified by selecting individual species from the USFS data. The original USFS dataset is a compilation of forest insect, disease and abiotic damage mapped by aerial detection surveys on forested areas in the United States. At this time, the National Aerial Survey Data Standards require only mortality and defoliation data be collected and reported. However, many cooperators collect data on other types of damage and therefore, the national database has been designed to accommodate these data. Low-level flights, typically 1,000 to 2,000 feet above ground level, are used to map forest damage. Observers use paper maps, typically 1:100,000 scale USGS maps, upon which they record the damage. There is also a digital sketchmap system that may be used. The digital system uses GPS to display the plane's current location on screen along with an electronic version of a variety of base maps. It allows the observer to record damage areas directly in a GIS database. Due to the nature of aerial surveying, there may be areas within the delineated polygons that are unaffected. For example, an area with a patchy mosaic of forest insect activity may be recorded as one larger polygon by the observer. During aerial surveys, only fading trees (those with yellow, brown, or red foliage) or those with some defoliation are mapped. Older dead trees which have lost their foliage or have dull colored foliage are not typically mapped for two primary reasons: 1) it is harder to see older dead trees that may have lost their needles and 2) it prevents recording trees that were mapped in a prior year's survey. Overview surveys are a 'snap shot' in time and therefore may not be timed to accurately capture the true extent or severity of a particular disturbance activity. Specially designed surveys with modified flight patterns and timing may be conducted to more accurately delineate the extent and severity of a particular disturbance agent. Special surveys are conducted when resources are available to address situations of sufficient economic, political or environmental importance.
More information on aerial sketchmapping is available on the web at:
More information on the digital sketchmap system is available on the web at:
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USDA Forest Service, Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team (FHTET), Merriam-Powell Center for Environmental Research
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Title: Pinyon-Juniper Woodland Mortality in Southwestern US 2000-2007
Credits: USDA Forest Service, Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team (FHTET), Merriam-Powell Center for Environmental Research
Publisher: Merriam-Powell Center for Environmental Research
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Merriam_Powell Center for Environmental Research
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MPCER Use Constraints: This dataset was created form data provided by the USFS. In the event that end users require the original raw data, they are encouraged to obtain it directly from the USFS. MPCER makes no representation as to the suitability or accuracy of these data for any other purpose and disclaims any liability for errors that the data may contain. As such, it is only valid for its intended use, content, time, and accuracy specifications. While there are no explicit constraints on the use of these data, please exercise appropriate and professional judgment in the use and interpretation of these data. Acknowledgement of the originating agencies would be appreciated in products derived from these data. MPCER shall not be held liable for improper or incorrect use of the data described and/or contained herein. These data and related graphics ("GIF" format files) are not legal documents and are not intended to be used as such. The information contained in these data is dynamic and may change over time. The data are not better than the original sources from which they were derived. It is the responsibility of the data user to use the data appropriately and consistent within the limitations of geospatial data in general and these data in particular. USFS USER Constraints: Users need to exercise caution regarding the spatial accuracy of these data due to the subjective nature of aerial sketchmapping and the varying scales of source materials. Comparison with other datasets for the same area from other time periods may be inaccurate due to inconsistencies resulting from rounding of decimal coordinates during conversion, changes in mapping conventions over time, change in assignment of damage casual agent, and type of data collection. Any products (hardcopy or electronic) using these data sets shall clearly indicate their source. If the user has modified the data in any way, they are obligated to describe the modifications on all products. The user specifically agrees not to misrepresent these data sets, nor to imply that changes made were approved by the USDA Forest Service.
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