Land cover is the physical surface of the earth, often described using classes of vegetation and land use. Landscape spatial structure resulting from natural processes, and its variation through time, underlies the diversity and integrity of ecosystems. The composition (types and amounts of different land cover), configuration (spatial arrangement of land cover types), and connectivity determine habitat availability, the movements of organisms, and energy and material flows on a landscape.
This vital sign has been deferred for future implementation. In the meantime, check out the completed landcover inventories for Alaska parks.