Area: Geomatics and Information Technologies
Region: Capitale-Nationale
Year: 2007-2011
Client : MFFP

Automatic Survey Plan Creation Tool

The forest inventory department of the ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs (MFFP) maintains an inventory of Québec’s forests by measuring several thousand temporary and permanent sample plots each year. Sampling is a rigorous process designed to obtain data that are representative of Québec’s forests. A geomatics tool was developed jointly with the MFFP to perform automatic random distribution of sample plots for survey plans. 

The system randomly generates the locations of new sample plots, based on the survey’s prescriptions (number of plots per forest stratum) and implementation constraints (land access, cruise line length, number of plots per line, number of plots per stand, etc.). It uses several theme-based coverage elements in the areas to be surveyed, including eco-forest maps, classified road networks, drainage network, air access potential and so on.

The tool was developed over a four-year period, using ArcGis and ArcInfo software, and was improved progressively during yearly survey plan production exercises.