Use of GIS for landscape design in natural resource management: Habitat assessment and management for the female black bear

Lucinda B Johnson, George E Host, James Jordan, Lynn Rogers

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations


The U.S. Forest Service uses a hierarchically-defined, ecologically-based, multifactor land classification system (ECS) to inventory and manage its National Forest Lands. The ecological land units for two Opportunity Areas in the Ottawa National Forest were digitized and linked with vegetation and habitat structural databases to develop a system to quantify habitat suitability for a female black bear and cub. Since the bear's range (approximately 4 mi2) and the ELTP units are of similar scales, it is a model species to test the ability of ECS information to identify suitable areas for black bear management. Our objective was to develop a prototype system to assess habitat suitability by analyzing floristic and structural information inherent in the ECS using a GIS. A vector-based GIS was used to integrate the habitat and forage requirements for the female black bear and her cub for six seasons (early spring, late spring, early summer, late summer, fall and winter) with the ecological land type phase (ELTP) units. Potential habitat suitability was then assessed for each ELTP. Spatial analyses performed over the region will be used to refine the indices, taking into account the distribution of suitable and unsuitable habitat patches within the bear's potential home range. This system will be used to predict the potential location of suitable habitat, and provide managers with tools for assessing the impact of management techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationGIS/LIS 1991 Proceedings
PublisherPubl by ASPRS
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)0944426751
StatePublished - Dec 1 1991
EventProceedings of GIS/LIS '91 - Atlanta, GA, USA
Duration: Oct 28 1991Nov 1 1991

Publication series

NameGIS/LIS 1991 Proceedings


OtherProceedings of GIS/LIS '91
CityAtlanta, GA, USA

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