Vegetation Classification and Mapping

Two field crew members record vegetation data in an open forest understory
Field crew members recording vegetation data in a plot at Mount Rainier National Park

NPS photo

The Vegetation Mapping Inventory is an effort by the National Park Service to classify, describe, and map detailed vegetation communities in more than 270 national park units across the United States. The objective of the Vegetation Mapping Inventory is to produce high-quality, standardized maps and associated data sets of vegetation and other land-cover occurring within parks. The vegetation maps are produced at a 1:12,000 scale with a minimum mapping unit of 1/2 hectare and to 80% accuracy. North Coast and Cascades Network has developed vegetation maps for Network parks in partnership with the Washington Natural Heritage Program (a division of the Washington Department of Natural Resources) and the Institute for Natural Resources (based at Portland State University).

Final products from the vegetation inventory are more than a map and report; they include an entire library of vegetation data and descriptive information. Users can download plot data, detailed descriptions of every plant association, ecological system, and map class in a park, and photographs of vegetation from ground level. Because our maps are digital, the information can be organized and displayed in dozens of ways, new information can be added, and data from other projects can be layered over the maps. The vegetation maps produced in this inventory can be used by the public for various applications including natural resource management, research, sensitive or threatened habitat identification, and educational programs. They can also serve as baseline vegetation information to evaluate change in national parks over time.

Reports and Publications

Source: Data Store Saved Search 3475. To search for additional information, visit the Data Store.

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    Last updated: May 22, 2023