Ecological Mapping Systems

About the Data

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, in cooperation with private, state, and federal partners, has produced a new 398 class, 10 meter spatial resolution land classification map for Texas. This was accomplished by attributing land cover and abiotic variables to 10 meter resolution image objects generated from NAIP photographs, and then executing expert rules in the form of: land cover + abiotic variables = mapped type. In some regions, enhanced satellite land cover classification, landform modeling efforts, or other ancillary data were included to map important current vegetation types. More than 14,000 ground data samples were collected in support of the mapping effort, the largest effort of this kind ever in Texas. Significant overall improvements over existing maps included better spatial and thematic resolution as well as the mapping of many live oak types statewide, evergreen versus deciduous shrublands in appropriate regions, a wide variety of disturbance types, and types over unique soils (e.g. salty, deep sand, gyp-influenced). The vegetation database resulted in an accuracy of 74% to 90%. These results are used by a wide variety of partners in Texas for conservation planning and management.

Ecological Mapping Systems Updates

Updates to the vegetation data may occur as funds are available in regions that are priorities for either TPWD or partners. Download most recent version of the vegetation data.

Area Updates

  • Area along the Arroyo Colorado in the Lower Rio Grande Valley updated in 2014.
  • Area from Chambers County, TX south to Matagorda county updated as part of a NPCA funded project, in 2015.

Download Ecological Mapping Systems Data

Select an Ecoregion to Download EMS Data

Project Partners

MoRAP  Texas Water Development Board  NatureServe  The Nature Conservancy  Texas A&M Forest Service  USFWS  USFS  TNRIS