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Ministry of Natural Resources Science & Information Branch

February 2009

Predicted Vegetation Maps for Eccodistriict 6e10 and the Greater Park Ecosyste em (GPE)) Areaa forr St. Lawrence Islandss National Park:

Danijela Puric-Mladenovic, Julia Buck, and Alex MacIntosh


The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Park GPE Vegetation Mapping Product

Table of Contents: Table of Contents:............................................................................................................... 1 The Predictive Vegetation Modeling and Mapping Product for Ecodistrict 6E10 and St. Lawrence Islands Greater Park Ecosystem......................................................................... 2 What is this product? ...................................................................................................... 2 What is the extent of the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Greater Park Ecosystem product? ........................................................................................................ 2 Who produced the vegetation models and maps?........................................................... 3 Why were the predicted vegetation maps for Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE created?................................................................................................................... 3 How were the maps for Eco-District 6e10 and St. Lawrence Islands GPE produced? .. 4 How was the field data that is used to support the modeling collected, and who collected it? ..................................................................................................................... 4 How long did it take to collect the field data that the maps are based on?..................... 4 How should this product be used? .................................................................................. 5 How were the models validated? .................................................................................... 5 How is this product different from Forest Resources Inventory (FRI) mapping?.......... 6 How does this product relate to Southern Ontario Land Resource Information System (SOLRIS) mapping? ....................................................................................................... 6 What variables are mapped in this product? ................................................................... 6 How is this product being distributed? ........................................................................... 8 Who should I contact to get more information on PVMM and the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands National Park GPE product?.............................................................. 8 Using the Ecodistrict 6E10 and St. Lawrence Islands Greater Park Ecosystem Predictive Vegetation Modeling and Mapping Product....................................................................... 9 How can I find the specific maps and information that I’m interested in within the product?........................................................................................................................... 9 How can the maps in the product be displayed or printed? .......................................... 10 How should this product be referenced?....................................................................... 10

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The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Park GPE Vegetation Mapping Product

The Predictive Vegetation Modeling and Mapping Product for Ecodistrict 6E10 and St. Lawrence Islands Greater Park Ecosystem What is this product? This product is a digital atlas containing over 180 vegetation and habitat related maps generated through predictive modeling. The various maps contained in the atlas are raster grids1 with 10m pixel resolution. The digital atlas can be easily navigated through the use of various supporting documents and ‘readme’ files.

What is the extent of the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Greater Park Ecosystem product? The mapping product covers all of Eco-district 6e10, plus the entire Greater Park Ecosystem (GPE) area of St Lawrence Islands National Park (Figure 1). The total area covered by this mapping product is 2467 km2.

Figure 1. The extent of the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE vegetation mapping product. 1

With raster data models, the geographic area is divided into cells identified by row and column. This data structure is commonly called raster or grid.

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The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Park GPE Vegetation Mapping Product Â

Who produced the vegetation models and maps? The statistical modeling, validation, mapping, metadata and documentation for the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE product were produced by the Information Management and Spatial Analysis (IM&SA) Unit, Southern Science and Information Section, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources.

Why were the predicted vegetation maps for Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE created? In southern Ontario, there is a lack of current “wall-to wall�, fine-scale, detailed vegetation mapping that can support different applications and initiatives related to natural resource management, conservation and landscape and land-use planning. Wallto-wall products are those which comprehensively cover a project area (i.e. from one border to the other border). The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE vegetation maps were created to serve as baseline information for resource management activities such as natural heritage design and planning, Species at Risk (SAR) recovery planning, state of biodiversity reporting, forest management and planning, invasive species management, ecological good and services estimates, wildlife habitat modeling and mapping and various additional applications and research techniques that require mapped vegetation information.

Figure 2. The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE vegetation maps have been used to predict SAR habitat, including rock barren habitat suitable for the five lined skink. Dark green areas indicate higher probability of suitable habitat for five lined skink.

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The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Park GPE Vegetation Mapping Product Â

How were the maps for Eco-District 6e10 and St. Lawrence Islands GPE produced? Predictive Vegetation Modeling (PVM) was used to create these maps. PVM is a suite of statistical methods and processes that are used to develop models for species distribution and abundance and habitat characteristics based on data collected in the field and readily available mapped environmental information (e.g. Digital Elevation Models, soil information, climate averages), as well as information derived from satellite imagery. Once are developed and validated, the statistically-based models are extrapolated across the entire study area to map where a specific species is likely to occur and/or where it is likely to occur in greater abundance.

How was the field data that is used to support the modeling collected, and who collected it? Vegetation, soil and physiographical data were collected in the field following the Vegetation Sampling Protocol (VSP)2, which is a plot based sampling strategy. Field work was carried out and supported by St. Lawrence Islands National Park, Frontenac Arch and Charleston Lake Provincial Parks, Kemptville District OMNR and Eastern Ontario Model Forest. The IM&SA Unit provided the sampling methodology, the field sampling design and compiled, standardized and validated field information.

How long did it take to collect the field data that the maps are based on? Field data collection across Ecodistrict 6e10 and the St. Lawrence Islands GPE area took place over three field seasons, from 2005-2007 (Figure 3). During this time, over 1000 forest and 100 wetlands plots were visited in the field, and over 1000 rock-barren polygons were digitized. Spatial data preparation, statistical modeling, model validation, extrapolation and mapping were completed by the IM&SA Unit in late 2008.

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 Puric-Mladenovic, D., Bradley, D., Strobl, S., Lee, H., Arends, R., and MacIntosh, A. 2009. The Vegetation Sampling Protocol (VSP): Version 2.1. Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Peterborough, Ontario.

http://www.forestry.utoronto.ca/imsa/VSP

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The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Park GPE Vegetation Mapping Product

Figure 3. Field sampling at over 1100 plots across Ecodistrict 6e10 and the St. Lawrence Islands GPE took place over 3 field seasons.

How should this product be used? This product can be used to support various site specific or landscape scale applications and initiatives that require individual species, vegetation type, and forest structure and/or site characteristics maps. The maps contained in the product should be used with the understanding that individual maps are based on statistical models which have a known statistical uncertainty.

How were the models validated? All models were validated in a number of ways including internal model validation, withholding a portion of the data used in the modeling for validation, and validation with an independent data set. The results of the different validation methods are recorded for each vegetation model in the document “6e10_vegetationdigitalatlas.html” that is provided with the 6e10 and St. Lawrence Islands GPE products.

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The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Park GPE Vegetation Mapping Product

How is this product different from Forest Resources Inventory (FRI) mapping? The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE and FRI mapping products differ fundamentally in how they were derived. While FRI mapping relies primarily on aerialphoto interpretation, the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE maps are statistically derived and relied heavily on data collected in the field. FRI mapping provides a few structural and compositional variables (e.g. dominant tree species, tree height and age, site quality), while the Eco-district 6e10/ St. Lawrence Islands GPE mapping provides up to 180 variables as mapped products (e.g. dominant tree, shrub and ground vegetation distribution, percent canopy cover, forest structure, site characteristics). In addition, mapping for Ecodistrict 6e10/ St. Lawrence Islands GPE also includes mapping of nontreed wetlands (Figure #) and rock-barrens.

How does this product relate to Southern Ontario Land Resource Information System (SOLRIS) mapping? Forest vegetation for Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE was modeled and mapped within the 2000-02 SOLRIS boundaries (i.e. SOLRIS woodland and wetland polygons), and as such forest extent and minimum mapping units are inherited from SOLRIS. In contrast to SOLRIS, this mapping product has more classes for forests, wetlands and also includes rock-barren ecosystems.

What variables are mapped in this product? Variables mapped in the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE product include structural vegetation characteristics such as canopy cover and basal area as well as species composition information for dominant canopy and ground species, both presence and abundance. Various vegetation classes were mapped, including statistically derived species assemblages (Figure 4) and ELC Vegetation Types. Wetland classes, rock barrens, and soil moisture were also predicted and mapped.

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The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Park GPE Vegetation Mapping Product

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Figure 4. Vegetation assemblages and wetland classes are among the variables mapped in the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE product.

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The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Park GPE Vegetation Mapping Product Â

How is this product being distributed? The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE product is distributed through Land Information Ontario (LIO): http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/en/Business/LIO/index.html To obtain this data, you or your organization must be a member of the LIO Ontario Geospatial Data Exchange (OGDE). If you are not a member please contact LIO@ontario.ca. The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources makes some data classes available to the general public through an Unrestricted Use License (UUL): (http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/en/Business/LIO/2ColumnSubPage/STEL02_167959.html#U UL_) Information about becoming a OGDE member can be found at: http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/en/Business/LIO/2ColumnSubPage/STEL02_167959.html#O GDE_ Once you have either signed an UUL or OGDE agreement you will be provided with a username and password to order the data from the data subscription service at http://www.applio.lrc.gov.on.ca/lids/ and the product will be sent to you on a DVD. Â

Who should I contact to get more information on PVMM and the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands National Park GPE product? Dr. Danijela Puric-Mladenovic Sr. Analyst Settled Landscapes Information Management and Spatial Analysis Unit Southern Science and Information Section Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources Peterborough ON 705-755-3262 danijela.puricmladenovic@ontario.ca

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The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Park GPE Vegetation Mapping Product

Using the Ecodistrict 6E10 and St. Lawrence Islands Greater Park Ecosystem Predictive Vegetation Modeling and Mapping Product How can I find the specific maps and information that I’m interested in within the product? There are a number of ways to find information on specific maps and datasets within the product folders: • In the folder “6e10_documents” you will find a document called folder_structure.pdf that explains the layout of the product, where you can find different maps and a brief description of each folder. • All rasters have metadata associated with them that can be accessed through Arc Catalog or Arc Map under the metadata tab. • There is an OLID record of the product that can be found on the LIO website: (http://lioapp.lrc.gov.on.ca/edwin/edwin.asp)

Figure 5. Files contained in the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE product (left) and thumbnail images of the various folders in the product that contain maps.

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The Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands Park GPE Vegetation Mapping Product

How can the maps in the product be displayed or printed? The maps in the Ecodistrict 6e10/St. Lawrence Islands GPE can be displayed and printed following standard legend schemes that are provided as ArcGIS layer files or as ArcGIS *.mxd files. These files are provided within this product in the following folders: • Layer Files: Found in each folder that starts with “ForPredicted” • Mxd Files: In the folder 6e10_DigitalAtlas_jpegs, every folder has a *.mxd file for each raster grid.

How should this product be referenced? Puric-Mladenovic, D., Bradley, D., Arends, R., Buck, J., and Strobl, S. 2008. Digital atlas of predicted species distributions, vegetation assemblages and habitat characteristics for Ecodistrict 6e10 and the St. Lawrence Islands National Park GPE, version 1.0. Information Management and Spatial Analysis Unit, Southern Science and Information Section, OMNR, Peterborough, Ontario.  

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/PVM6e10_FAQ_March_8_2011  

http://www.eomf.on.ca/images/stories/files/PVM6e10_FAQ_March_8_2011.pdf

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