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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Monitoring & Assessment
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This page provides access to rangeland monitoring and assessment information and tools developed by the Jornada together with its collaborators. Most of these tools were designed to be applied across multiple land use and land cover types, including cropland, forest and riparian ecosystems.


Image Interpreter Tool

About the Image Interpreter Tool

The Image Interpreter Tool was designed to allow users to easily identify point locations overlaid on high resolution imagery into general vegetation or ground cover types in a repeatable fashion. This tool mimics field sampling methods (i.e., line point intercept) using remotely sensed data and "virtual" points along transects.

Image Interpreter has two main components: a calibration procedure (including training and testing modes) and a data interpretation procedure. Both components utilize a simple to use and intuitive interface for users familiar with ArcMap 9.3.

The training mode is designed to teach the user to correctly identify each ground cover type and provide training on the basic mechanics of tool. Testing mode evaluates how well a user can identify cover types by comparing individual results to a training dataset. Individual users ability to identify ground cover can be calibrated using these procedures to ensure repeatability among many users or project trials.

Download a whitepaper describing the Image Interpreter Tool here.

Image Interpreter Tool Features

  • Easy, direct integration into ArcGIS 9.3 (nothing additional to install)
  • Simple and intuitive interface for users familiar with ArcMap
  • Quickly attribute sample locations in a repeatable fashion
  • Attribute data is saved automatically at each location
  • Can be used on portable storage devices (e.g., USB thumb drive)
  • Toggle between Color-IR and True Color (RGB) views with one click
  • Can navigate sequentially or jump to any selected location
  • Provides platform to easily replicate classifications among many observers of project trials
  • Generate ground cover percentages by plot and by transect and save results as simple.dbf file
  • Effort can be compared among users or to training datasets to ensure consistent results
  • Username and date stamp recorded at each sample location
  • Existing interpretation data can be re-evaluated and modified
  • "Detail Type" toggle option for additional attributes (i.e., species) to be recorded at each site
  • Any "Detail Type" entered becomes available via dropdown for subsequent locations
  • Customizable to accommodate project objectives

Download the Image Interpreter Tool


 

Data Collection

This section contains blank data forms that accompany the Monitoring Manual for Grassland, Shrubland and Savanna Ecosystems.  In addition, Excel files are available for your PC and PDA that contain automatic indicator calculations for the same methods.  Please see the Database for Inventory, Monitoring and Assessment (DIMA) to store, collect and manage data sets. 

 


Last Modified: 1/14/2014
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