Historical Vegetation Mapping

Land managers and researchers often want to know what a landscape looked like years ago, to compare how the ecology has changed, assess the rate of change, and make decisions about how to manage the area for the future.

INR and its partners have created datasets of historical vegetation in Oregon at both fine and coarse scales, using several different data sources. INR and its partners have also created maps of historical vegetation and stream networks for portions of the Pacific Northwest, based on interpretation of public land survey records of the federal government's General Land Office (GLO), and, where available, U.S. Coast Survey topographic maps ("T-Sheets"). The maps depict vegetation at coarse scale (forest, woodland, savanna, prairie) and finer scale (species assemblages). In some areas where historical stream networks were altered by later agricultural and urban development, we mapped stream alignments as delineated at the time of survey.