GIS70 Konza Prairie Woody Plant Mapping in Core Watersheds (1D, 20B, and 4B) in 2019


This dataset contains the point and polygon boundaries of shrubs and trees mapped in watersheds 1D, 4B, and 20B from May to August 2019. Datatype one (GIS700) defines the point locations of all trees mapped in these watersheds. Datatype two (GIS701) defines the point locations of all shrubs less than one meter wide in these watersheds. Datatype three (GIS702) defines the boundaries of select shrub species greater than one meter wide in these watersheds.

These data are available to download as zipped shapefiles (.zip), and compressed Google Earth KML layers (.kmz).

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Woody plants in watersheds 1D, 20B, and 4B were mapped using ArcPad 10.2 software on Trimble Juno 3B GPS units. The maximum PDOP was set at 2.5 meters and number of positions to average were set at 5 points and 5 vertices. Technicians completed mapping systematically using a 25-meter by 25-meter grid displayed on their GPS units and a printed map. This grid subdivided each watershed into manageable plots. To track progress throughout each watershed, the grid on the printed map was shaded once all woody plants in each plot were mapped.
All trees were mapped and identified to species with a point marked at the tree’s trunk. Each tree’s height was estimated using these categories:
•    Less than 1 meter
•    1 to 3 meters
•    3 to 5 meters
•    Greater than 5 meters
Eight shrub species were mapped:
•    False indigo bush (Amorpha fruticosa)
•    Rough-leaf dogwood (Cornus drummondii)
•    Pale dogwood (Cornus obliqua)
•    American plum (Prunus americana)
•    Chicksaw plum (Prunus angustifolia)
•    Aromatic sumac (Rhus aromatica)
•    Smooth sumac (Rhus glabra)
•    Pricklyash (Zanthoxylum americanum)
Shrubs were mapped as either polygons or points depending on size. If a shrub was less than a meter at its widest point, it was marked as a point at the plant’s center and its dimensions were estimated. If greater than a meter wide, the technician walked the plant’s perimeter and obtained a polygon for the shrub.

For mapping trees, sometimes the GPS lost its signal under the tree canopy or it was impossible to reach the trunk of the tree (due to low growing branches or dense shrubs). In these situations, a point was taken as close to the tree as the GPS signal allowed or technician could reach. The technician documented about how many feet and which direction the point needed to be moved. Once back in the lab, the point was moved manually in Esri’s ArcMap software based on notes taken in the field. Measurements will be repeated in every 5 years.

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For additional methods information see:

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