“The Habitat Digitizer Extension is a GIS tool designed to use a hierarchical classification scheme to delineate features by visually interpreting georeferenced images such as aerial photographs, satellite images, and side scan sonar. The extension allows users to create custom classification schemes, digitize polygons, lines, and points using standard ArcGIS editing tools, and attribute the features using a dialog containing the user-created scheme. The extension allows new hierarchical classification schemes to be easily created, modified, and saved for use on future mapping projects. There are several advantages to using classification schemes with a hierarchical structure: the detail of habitat categories can be expanded or collapsed to suit user needs, the thematic accuracy of each category/hierarchical level can be determined, and additional categories can be easily added or deleted at any level of the scheme to suit user needs.
“This GIS tool has been useful in many benthic habitat mapping projects of the Biogeography Branch; see related project links below.”