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Wednesday, October 19 • 8:45am - 9:15am
Technical Session. Using Python to Automate Map Exports

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AUTHORS: Don Katnik, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

ABSTRACT: A MapBook can export maps showing the same data for different geographic extents but not different data for the same extent. For Maine’s 2015 State Wildlife Action Plan (SWAP), we needed to produce a geographic range map for 354 “Species of Greatest Conservation Need.” These maps combined presence/absence data and the distribution of potential habitat to predict where each species could occur. Expecting this to be an iterative process as the input data, layout design, and SWAP evolved (many times), we used Python to automate the work. Steps for each species included: 1) standardizing data across multiple input sources; 2) combining data while retaining the source for each observation; 3) overlaying the observations across Landscape Sample Units (LSUs = Maine townships for terrestrial species and sub-watersheds for aquatics); 4) calculating the proportion of potential habitat in each LSU; and 5) generating a map with the species’ name, a custom legend, potential habitat distribution, and presence/absence in each LSU color-coded by data source. By automating this process, we could create a new generation of maps after each public meeting. We used persistent data dictionaries and log files to allow partial runs and resume-where-you-left-off-when-it-crashed processing, respectively.

Wednesday October 19, 2016 8:45am - 9:15am EDT