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Americas/Caribbean_Mesoamerican_Lowland_Grassland_Savanna_Shrubland (MapServer)

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Service Description: Building from prior national and regional ecological classifications, a hemisphere-wide hierarchical classification was established to describe natural upland and wetland types at six levels of thematic detail. Existing regional maps were reconciled to the standard classification and provided georeferenced locations for use in modeling. Spatial modeling used climate, geophysical and satellite data in a sequential process to map potential distributions at three levels of the classification hierarchy. Modeling, followed by expert review and refinement, resulted in maps of 656 natural units (approximating the 6th level of the classification hierarchy) and 341 natural units for the project area (at the 5th level of the classification hierarchy). The potential distribution map depicts each major ecosystem type had there been no intensive human land uses in recent centuries. Validation of the map indicated high agreement at finest spatial resolutions, suggesting that for most map classes, the maps are suitable for use in applications requiring a pixel resolution of 450m x 450m and larger. Current land use/land cover was derived using available global data on human land use intensity and combined with the potential distribution maps to measure change in extent for each natural type. NatureServe’s framework for measuring vulnerability of habitats and ecosystems (HCCVI) provides a practical approach to organize criteria and indicators for this purpose (Comer et al. 2012). This framework provides a scorecard for reporting on the relative vulnerability of a given habitat or ecosystem type within spatial analysis units that are >100km2 in size. The layer represents the scorecard (scores for multiple individual indicators of vulnerability) of multiple indicator values of ecological resilience. All component layers include index values standardized to a 0.0-1.0 range, with 1.0 indicating highest ecological condition, and 0.0 indicating lowest ecological condition. Therefore, the lowest quartile of index scores indicate Very High vulnerability to effects within the assessment timeframe. Resilience scores reflect the summary of subscores for ecological sensitivity and adaptive capacity. Sensitivity includes measures of ecological condition or integrity, as with decreasing integrity, ecosystem responses to stress are increasingly compromised. Measures for sensitivity of upland vegetation types include landscape condition (based on land use intensity), invasive annual grass risk, and fire regime alteration (using LANDFIRE Fire Regime Condition Class). Adaptive capacity addresses natural characteristics of the ecosystem type that lend a degree of capacity to cope with stress. Biotic measures include estimates of diversity within functional species groups, and relative vulnerability of any “keystone” species. An abiotic measure includes topoclimatic variability. This indicates the likelihood of high microclimate diversity within landscapes that support the ecosystem type; thus buffering aspects of rapidly changing climate for characteristic species in the ecosystem type. Map layers may be displayed by base level indicators, by summary scores of Sensitivity and Adaptive Capacity, overall Resilience scores, overall Exposure scores, and overall Vulnerability.

Map Name: Layers


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Dynamic Legend

Dynamic All Layers

Layers: Description:

Copyright Text: NatureServe

Spatial Reference: 102100  (3857)

Single Fused Map Cache: false

Initial Extent: Full Extent: Units: esriMeters


Document Info: Supports Dynamic Layers: true

MaxRecordCount: 10000

MaxImageHeight: 4096

MaxImageWidth: 4096

Supported Query Formats: JSON, AMF, geoJSON

Min Scale: 0

Max Scale: 0

Supports Datum Transformation: true

Child Resources:   Info   Dynamic Layer

Supported Operations:   Export Map   Identify   QueryDomains   Find   Return Updates   Generate KML