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National FIA
Spatial Data Services

Louis C. Wyman Forestry Sciences Laboratory
271 Mast Road
PO Box 640
Durham, NH 03824

Elizabeth LaPoint


 United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service. USDA logo which links to the department's national site. Forest Service logo which links to the agency's national site.

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We welcome your comments on our service and your suggestions for improvement.

Examples of Requests

Pine Marten
American Marten (Pine Marten)

Examples of Our Work

American Marten
Researchers interested in learning more about American Marten habitat in Maine needed information about canopy closure and tree density to use in conjunction with their imagery. They sent the imagery and we performed an overlay with the FIA plots. After some discussion, we decided that knowing average total height of the dominant, codominant and open grown trees, land use, percent crown closure, and the physiographic class were most appropriate for the researchers to use in locating marten habitat. Data were summarized by condition, so there were multiple result records per plot. Below is an example of the overlay of FIA plot locations on the researcher's image. The FIA plots are the red dots (these are not true locations). The image is of Kennebec County, Maine. The researchers had sent an image that they had classified. We performed an intersection that attached FIA plot information to each pixel. To protect the plot locations, we ensured that there were no unique pixels associated with the plots.

Picture of Kennebec County, Maine imagery with FIA plot locations overlay

Then the FIA data was summarized for the researchers. In the table below Cell ID is the image pixel information discussed above. The rest of the data shown are either data items collected by field crews or calculated from collected data items.

County Plot# Point Cell ID Land Use Phys Class Crown Closure BA Sum Avg. Height
1 3 1 1234 20 22 1 41 41.62
1 3 2 1245 20 22 1 41 41.62
1 8 1 1567 20 21 3 134 68.33
1 18 1 19878 20 12 2 49 44.28
1 18 2 1893 20 12 1 49 44.28
1 19 1 9822 20 22 3 55 47.5

More information about the Data collected by FIA crews is available at Using the data given to them and their imagery, the researchers were able to identify areas where they could expect to find American Marten habitat.

Other examples include overlaying FIA plots with coverages to complete an accuracy assessment by comparing polygon attributes to FIA plot attributes. This is easily done while preserving data security. Although the FIA SDS is located at the Northeastern Research Station, it was designed to handle national data requests as well as regional ones.

Some National Projects in the Works:

We are cooperating with the EROS Data Center by providing data to assist with the National Land Cover Data mapping project (an output of the Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics Consortium or MRLC). This project will produce an updated version of the National Land Cover map.

Picture of portion of the 1992 Florida National Land Cover map
This picture shows a portion of the 1992 Florida National Land Cover Map.

Another National Project currently active is a request from researchers at Virginia Tech for an overlay of FIA plots with soil GIS layers. They are interested in the relationship between soil carbon levels and forest type.

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