Sonoma County Vegetation and Habitat Map

In 2012, Tukman Geospatial was chosen as lead contractor for Sonoma Veg Map – a five year effort to create a fine scale vegetation and habitat map of the 1-million acre county of Sonoma, CA. The project was funded and led by the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District and the Sonoma County Water Agency.

Using a combination of field work, satellite imagery and LiDAR data, Trimble Ecogntition, and machine learning algorithms like Random Forests, Tukman Geospatial developed a fine scale vegetation map – mostly to the alliance level – of the county. The map has a 1-acre minimum mapping unit, with finer scale delineations for sensitive habitats like wetlands, riparian vegetation, and serpentine communities.

The Tukman Geospatial team worked with advisers including Todd Keeler Wolf’s team at the California Department of Fish and Game to collect field data and develop a set of decision rules and a dichotomous keys for the 83 classes that were mapped.

Tukman Geospatial worked closely with the county of Sonoma to develop a consortium of groups to acquire countywide high density LiDAR data and 4-band orthophotography. These datasets were indispensible in creating the fine scale vegetation and habitat map. In addition to creating the fine scale countywide map, Tukman Geospatial developed an array of viewers and tools to make the LiDAR data (and its derivatives) and the fine scale vegetation and habitat map easily available to program stakeholders and the public. Tukman Geospatial also served as lead contractor for the program’s outreach effort, which includes a web site, a data download portal, and program newsletters.
Subcontractors to Tukman Geospatial on this project included Kass Green and Associates, Prunuske Chatham, Inc., the Spatial Informatics Group (SIG), the California Native Plant Society (CNPS), and Quantum Spatial.
For more information on this project, go to

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