Data Summary

Riparia Land Cover - Core vs. Edge forest interpretation 2011

2018 - The Pennsylvania State University

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Based on Robbins et al., (1989) and Debinski & Holt, (2000) as well as long conversations with PA wildlife experts 100 meters was established as the distance into a forest that edge effects would influence the health of a forest. Many forest species are influenced by disturbance and either avoid or are less successful in edge forest areas. To create this layer the land cover layer was reclassed to focus forest classes (deciduous forest, mixed forest and coniferous forest) as well as wetlands into one Forest/Natural class and the remaining disturbed classes (urban, suburban, transitional and annual & perennial herbaceous). At this stage, wildlife experts were not convinced that road footprints were captured appropriately since the land cover missed most state and local roads. PA Tiger roads (2009) were used to “burn in” or force the roads into the land cover layer. Once complete a distance function was used to isolate the first 100 meters into any forest as edge forest. The last step isolated the water class from the original land cover and ensured that it remained in the final core forest layer. The resulting raster layer has four classes: Core Forest, Edge Forest, Not Forest and Water.