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Creating Custom Map Distributions

iMapInvasives allows users to create custom map distributions using its map Filter and Add Distribution Layer tools. These distribution maps can be helpful for quickly viewing and sharing information about the known presence of a species or species across states, counties, or regional management areas, for example. Having a visualization of which counties have reported an invasive species and which have not can be helpful for planning and management strategies.

By combining the Distribution Layers tool with the custom Filter tool, users can create customized distributions to display just the information they are interested in. For example, you could create a filter for garlic mustard, then use the Add Distribution Layer tool to create a county distribution map showing just the counties where garlic mustard has been reported. This could highlight gaps surveying or reporting. Or, you could filter for aquatic species and create a waterbody distribution map to view waterbodies that have or have not reported presence of invasive species.

The infographic below provides steps to creating your own custom distribution map in iMapInvasives:


Multiple distribution layers can be created and displayed simultaneously, with different colors and transparencies, allowing users to compare distributions of different species or reports by different organizations, for example. The screenshot below compares two saved distributions created by filtering for Meadow Knapweed, then saving a county distribution layer in orange, followed by filtering for Russian Knapweed and saving a second distribution layer in purple. By adding transparency to both layers you can visualize where the distributions overlap - the two colors overlap to display in red.

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