Utah Valley University Herbarium
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 Utah Block Project: Progress from January to March 2009

  January 2009

     A TRS shapefile was imported into GIS software to create a baselayer for the creation of the Utah Block Basemap

Utah TRS Shapefile Screenshot

  Creation of the Utah Block Shapefile

  50 Square Mile Format

     44 blocks were generated for Utah. Each block is approximately 42 - 48 square miles or 7 X 7 to 8 X 8 Township/Range units. Some adjustments were made for irregular TRS and county boundaries.

  36 Square Mile Format

     82 blocks were generated for Utah. Each block is approximately 30 - 36 square miles or 6 X 5 to 6 X 6 Township/Range units. Adjustments were also made for irregular TRS boundaries.

     Cleanup and snapping of vertices and block boundaries are on-going. Also, for both formats, some adjustment was made to include small counties in as few blocks as possible (dashed county lines shown for reference).

     The Oregon Flora Project's block base map layer is 24 X 24 square miles or ~4 X 4 Township/Range units. For Utah that would create over 80 blocks. The Virtual Utah and Digital Atlas of Utah project has divided the state into 10 km X 10 km polygons (~ 6 square miles) for their biogeography & GIS research. More blocks require more volunteers and resources, but the scale and detail of the information would be finer.

Utah 50 Square Mile Block Shapefile Screenshot

Utah 36 Square Mile Block Shapefile Screenshot

 February-March 2009

     The 45,000 record database of Utah plants from the New York Botanical Garden (NY) was downloaded . The database is currently being modified to be compatible with the UVU Virtual Herbarium database. NY has most Utah families databased and is a great source for historical and modern (Holmgren’s and BYU dup’s) records for Utah. Most of which are also duplicates at UT herbaria that will not be databased for several years. This is the baseline dataset that will be used to generate preliminary block checklists. As this projects is just in the preliminary stages, there are many institutions that will need to be contacted to gain permission to use their data and to link the Block Checklist website to specimens displayed on their sites. Leila Shultz's Digital Atlas could be utilized to find potential taxa lists within blocks, which can be used when visiting member herbaria for the initial voucher review process.

 April-July 2009

     Not all of the specimens from NY are georeferenced. This is the current task being finished for the Block Project. From this list, however, a preliminary checklist for the Deep Creek Mountains was generated. The following checklist is an example excerpt from that list.

Checklist Excerpt for Brassicaceae, Deep Creek Range, Juab and Tooele Counties, Utah

 The Future

Portions of the Project in Development