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GIS Tools for Freshwater Biodiversity Conservation Planning

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The Nature Conservancy (TNC) has developed a set of customized GIS tools to help ensure that freshwater biodiversity is adequately incorporated into its regional conservation planning efforts. The tools generate GIS data and attributes that support a regional-scale classification of freshwater systems and analysis of the potential integrity of these same systems. They have been implemented by TNC in more than 30 ecoregions across the U.S., and work is expanding to include other parts of the Americas. The tools are now in their second iteration. While the first version of the tools worked only with the RF3 hydrography dataset available in the U.S., the second version is more flexible and will function with a variety of datasets. Future improvements in the tools could include an improved interface and improved algorithms to reduce data pre-processing needs. The GIS tools, documentation, and data from completed ecoregions are now publicly available on the Internet.

Document Type: Technical Note


Affiliations: The Nature Conservancy, Olympia, Washington

Publication date: March 1, 2005


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