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3 NPS GIS Case Studies


3 NPS GIS Case Studies Present experiences on planning a GIS program in a park, program or regional office and how data has been integrated across – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: 3 NPS GIS Case Studies

3 NPS GIS Case Studies
  • Present experiences on planning a GIS program in
  • park, program or regional office and how data has
    been integrated across
  • program areas and park divisions.
  • The Journey is much more Important that the
  • We are more similar than different.

  • Yellowstone- Big Park/Corporate Data with GIS
    culture in place
  • Pinnacles National Monument- Little Data
    Organization, Started Documenting Layers with
    metadata, established GIS plan
  • Appalachian Highlands Network- Preaching Best
    practices for Parks and Documenting select
    natural resource layers, Interacting with Park
    Staff and GIS people.
  • Overview to how I saw things, types of projects
    I worked on. Data Requests, metadata strategy,
    establishing connections with park people.

  • Tried to see things as they were/are
  • Not as I wish they were or Romanticizing the
  • What happened good and bad from a GIS
  • The more connections we establish, the better
    off we are-Bill Clinton

My First NPS Job
  • GRYN stationed at Mammoth, WY
  • Cartographic Tech, GS-7 Term

Yellowstone Center for Resources
  • Lots of specialists, well-funded
  • Wellorganized GIS data
  • System in place for metadata
  • Corporate structure
  • Available to all YELL employees, fast-connection
    within the YCR

With Big Staffs, Order and More Order
  • GPS check in Check Out
  • SOPS and Documentation
  • Strict Metadata Requirements for Corporate Data
  • Metadata Guide
  • Time for field personnel to create metadata at
    end of field season
  • Intuitive directory structure for finding data

Staff and Resources
  • 3 full-time Employees(One full-time IT)
  • At least 5 seasonal employees
  • GIS lab available to support the entire park
  • 2 or 3 Big HP Plotters

Who used this data
  • Fire
  • Ungulates(Elk, Bison, Antelope, Bighorn Sheep)
  • Wolf- Pack Home Range
  • Lynx- Habitat Selection
  • Fisheries(Lake and Cutthroat Trout)
  • Thermophile Inventory
  • IM Cooperators, USGS, USFS, Universities
  • Interpretation

  • Fisheries-Whirling Disease(NRDT-Geodatabase)
  • 303D Stream Maps
  • BigHorn Sheep Telemetry
  • Antelope Telemetry
  • Abandoned Mine Lands NRDT Database for BICA
  • Data Mining, SMSS metadata for GRTE

Lessons Learned
  • Success did not come overnight
  • Determination
  • Relevance and Cooperation
  • IM was learning from an already good situation
  • Carrots with other divisions/YCR programs
  • Sticks with directly supervised staff
  • Programs not working with GIS did not have as
    good data management/practices

Leaving Yellowstone June 2002
  • Ill be back

Pinnacles National Monument
  • California!

GIS Team of One Specialist
  • Decent base layers, decent structure
  • No Metadata, Boundary from where?
  • Little GIS culture
  • Small Park with Big things happening
  • Condor Re-Introduction
  • Feral Pig Eradication
  • Exotic Plant team, Vegetation Monitoring

Metadata 1st Priority
  • 15 layers documented with XML
  • Posting to Data Store
  • Rousing clapping at Resources Meeting
  • What then?

Seasonal Training
  • GPS/GIS Overview
  • GPS Units
  • Field Exercises in Data Collection and Field
  • Created shapefiles
  • GIS training hands-on
  • Analysis

Projects and Achievements
  • Developed GIS plan, Metadata Mandate
  • Updated Park Map for Super and LE Rangers
  • Condor Release Site Viewshed Analysis
  • Park Fire Model-ESRI Conference
  • Wilderness Updating
  • RMAP, 1st Park Completed
  • AMBAG participation
  • Aerial photography for Park
  • GIS Day at Local School

Lessons Learned
  • Planning and scoping is best recipe for getting
    quality results
  • Make yourself available, helpful, personable and
  • Listening and Working with other divisions proved
    invaluable to the perception of GIS and of
    Resource Management
  • E-mail can be dangerous and can affect your park
    perception, opinions need to be expressed through
    proper channels
  • Treat people the way you would like to be
    treated-Tom Leatherman

Leaving Pinnacles October 2003
  • Adios, Amigos!

Appalachian Highlands Inventory and Monitoring
  • Not always looking at a computer

What is our Network Role for GIS Data?
  • If we create it, or assemble it from cooperators,
    we metadate it
  • We assist the parks in GIS and make
    recommendations for quality data stewardship
  • We do not do their work for them, though I have
    led documentation efforts

GIS Drive for Network Server
  • Copies of park layers
  • Some duplication of layers that do not have
    frequent updates
  • Interim and draft information and works in
    progress are stored on this server
  • Final layers/ Geodatabases are given to parks
    with metadata

Outreach to Parks
  • Assisted to get GIS data documented with XML
    files for BISO and BLRI
  • Provided training and guidance on NPS metadata
  • Provided demonstrations of NPspecies, Datastore
    and NatureBib to GIS users and resource managers

Like it or Not
  • Little Park Data has metadata(always a last
  • Can connect remotely, not fast or ideal
  • Parks do not have a Corporate strategy
  • Some park communication with the Network about
    new data they aquire
  • Varied stream of products to parks(not everything
    at once)
  • Data flows from APHN to the Parks

Some APHN Products
  • Revised APHN Network Map
  • Data Request of buffered Species Data
  • SE NPS Units Map for CESU
  • OBRI mapping of Cobble Bars from Aerial Photos
  • BLRI Mapping of Poaching Arrests
  • BISO Reptile and Amphibian Maps
  • VegMap use for BISO Fire Planning

Similarities(In Closing)
  • Connections, especially IT
  • Valuable Tool that Generated ideas and new ways
    of looking at old problems
  • Some Base Layer Structure
  • Help with divisions other than Resource
    Management helped buy-in and justification for
    Resource Activities and Projects
  • GIS for me Evolved into Data Management,
    everywhere I went progressed more in this

  • Documentation of Datasets
  • Varied ways to make data discoverable
  • Lots of Staff Use, Little Staff Use
  • Requests and Documentation much more with
    network, more creativity and opportunity to
    explore with a park

Food for Thought
  • Its about the journey more than the destination,
    the journey will prove to be the most important
    part of your job
  • And not making the same mistake 3 times
  • Good to write down procedures for a complex GIS
  • Every contact with another person is an
    opportunity to exceed their expectations. Lets
    make sure we do! -Paul Anderson, SERO Regional

  • Attitude is Everything

  • What dont you understand?
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