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Mapping workshop set for landowners

A short course showing the importance of land mapping is planned next month through the cooperative efforts of the Solon Dixon Forestry Education Center with funding from Alabama Forests Forever Education grants.

A booklet to help private landowners use online program to create maps for their property has recently been completed by John Gilbert and John Kush. The book focuses on utilizing online mapping and spatial resources to make maps and utilize aerial photography, topographic layers, soils information, data collected with GPS units and even visual simulations for an area of interest including timber, fields, pastures, etc.

A short course will be offered on the subject at Solon Dixon Forestry Education Center near Brewton on April 3. Registration for the event has been extended to March 28.

Gilbert said the course will focus on information provided in the recently-completed booklet.

“Through working with the longleaf pine mapping effort and interacting with landowners, the Longleaf Pine Stand Dynamics Lab became interested in creating a timely, readily available, source of information and examples of online spatial resources to help landowners and conservation professionals make maps and utilize other data as they make decisions regarding the management of their property,” Gilbert said. “With funding from an Alabama Forests Forever Education Grant, the book focuses on utilizing online mapping and spatial resources to make maps and utilize aerial photography, topographic layers, soils information, data collected with GPS units, and even visual simulations for an area of interest (timber stand, agriculture field, pasture, etc.). “

Gilbert said the book is designed for beginners and provides keywords, homepage links, tutorial information, examples, and screenshots for online programs like Google Earth, Alabama Historic Aerial Photo Archive and others.

The book can be downloaded on the Longleaf Pine Stand Dynamics Lab website at http://www.lpsdl.auburn.edu/ under recent publications. For more information about the book or the longleaf pine mapping effort, contact John Gilbert at gilbejo@auburn.edu or 334-329-0236.