Module 8 - 274
8.4 Inventory Procedure
8.4.1 Site Photography
Photograph information should be documented on the Site Card or Fish
Collection Form (see SHIM Module 6). The following photographs of a
study area are required:
ɷ Riparian Inventory: One landscape (long horizontal axis)
photograph of the left bank transect from the right bank bankfull
margin, one landscape photograph of the right bank transect from
the left bank bankfull margin, and a minimum of two discretionary
landscape photographs of representative stand conditions or
features (i.e., bank slumping, invasive species, etc.) must be
ɷ In-stream habitat inventory: One upstream-oriented and one
downstream-oriented landscape (long horizontal axis) photograph
must be taken at a representative location of each reach to show
general stream characteristics including channel morphology,
riparian vegetation, and fish habitat features. More than two
photographs may be taken of a single reach at the discretion of
the field staff. Photographs of reaches are recorded on the Site
ɷ Fish habitat features: One landscape (long horizontal axis)
photograph must be taken of each fish habitat feature assigned a
NID during the in-stream habitat inventory. The photograph
should be taken from an angle that provides the best visual
representation of the feature. More than one photograph may be
taken of a single habitat feature at the discretion of the field staff.
Photographs of fish habitat features are recorded on the Site Card.
ɷ Fish: One landscape (long horizontal axis) representative
photograph of each fish species collected must be taken and
documented. Representative photographs of any fish that the
crew is unable to identify, or of any diseased or parasitized fish
must also be photographed. The quality of these photographs
should enable verification of fish species identifications. Each
photograph must include an object of scale, such as a ruler, to
indicate the relative size of the fish. More than one photograph
may be taken of each fish species at the discretion of the field
staff. Photographs of fish are recorded on the Fish Collection
The following information must be recorded for each photograph:
ɷ roll number (roll #) - the film roll number corresponding to each
ɷ frame number (frame #) - the negative frame number
corresponding to each photograph.
ɷ focal length (foc. lg.) - The focal length of the lens used to take
each photograph, recorded in millimetres.
ɷ date (date) - the date (day/month/year).
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Module 9 - 275
ɷ direction (dir.) - the general direction of each photograph with
respect to the site from which the photograph was taken, i.e., Up
(upstream), Dn (downstream), XS (across the stream) or Bd
(towards the stream bed).
ɷ location - the location of the photograph must be determined
using available mapping or a GPS unit, expressed as a UTM.
ɷ comments - any relevant comments about the photograph should
be recorded. These should be descriptive enough and concise
enough to provide a caption for the photograph.
Agency partners should be consulted at the initiation of the project to
determine if reporting requirements have changed for photodocumentation.
8.5.1 Required Inventory Data
The mandatory inventory data products for the Photodocumentation
Photograph Information including:
ɷ roll number
ɷ frame number
ɷ focal length
Digital Photograph Files
A digital copy of all photographs is required. The CD must be referenced
using the Project Code and labelled using the standards given in
to Photodocumentation for Aquatic Inventories (RIC, 1996)
following requirements apply to data storage and presentation:
ɷ Scanning hardware requirements - at least 24bit, capable of 16
million true colours. A flatbed scanner with minimum 2400dpi
and 600spi is suggested;
ɷ File type – tagged information format file (TIFF) is required (ver. 6
preferred, ver. 5 acceptable; PC format). TIFF (ver. 5) will be much
more portable to slightly older programs, however some
improvements have been made for version 6, and can be read by
most current software. See http://home.earthlink.net/~ritter/tiff/
for more information regarding TIFF file formats. (High resolution
gif, jpeg files may also be suitable. Please contact agency partners
ɷ Colour files are required;
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ɷ Resolution - Resolution requirements for slides is 1200 dpi, and
for photographs (4”x6”) is greater than 300 dpi.
ɷ Scaling - Photographs must be scaled at 100%.
ɷ Labelling - Digital images must be labelled using whiteboards (this
will not work with post processing of images) or a
software/graphics package to label the image before it is stored
on CD (see example below)
Further information is available at http://www.infomedia.net/scan/The-
Figure 8.1: Example SHIM documented photograph. Yaakhsis Creek, Hesquiaht
Harbour, Aug. 29, 2000.
8.5.2 Required Map Products
There are no mandatory map products for Photodocumentation Module.
8.6 References Cited
Tips and Techniques of Image Scanning: http://www.infomedia.net/scan/The-
Resources Inventory Committee. 1996. A Guide to Photodocumentation for
The Unofficial TIFF Homepage: http://home.earthlink.net/~ritter/tiff/
Yaakhsis Creek, Roll 2, Frame 11, 35mm, f3.5, 29/08/00, Up,
Reach 1, Site 3,
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SHIM Data Deliverables and Data
9.1 Data Collection and Processing
All SHIM projects must conform to current mapping standards outlined in the
SHIM Mapping Procedures Guide (2001) and Resource Inventory Committee
standards for GPS (2002). Stream mapping must be undertaken using
resource grade GPS receiver systems that have been approved by the SHIM
mapping committee. At present only a limited number of receivers have
proven capable of meeting the +5m horizontal accuracy levels desired for
SHIM mapping projects. Acceptable GPS models may change as new
technology comes onto the market and a current listing of acceptable
systems should be obtained from the SHIM mapping committee before
initiating the project. Currently the only GPS receiver that has been fully
approved for stream mapping work with an accompanying customized SHIM
Data Dictionary is the Trimble Pathfinder Pro XR. While the Leica GS50 GPS
receiver is also considered of suitable accuracy, at present the SHIM Data
Dictionary is not compatible with this receiver and would require major re-
structuring. Most data collected with lower end GPS systems will lack the
spatial accuracy necessary for inclusion in SHIM projects; however, this
information may be useful for other planning purposes and we do not
discourage its collection. Acquiring some environmental data (even if crude)
is still much better than having no information at all.
The SHIM Data Dictionary (Version 24) represents the currently accepted
standard for collecting map data and this file can be obtained and
downloaded free (ddf format) from the SHIM mapping committee for use with
the Trimble GPS units. Previous SHIM protocols outlined in earlier
manuals involved manual data entry into Excel spreadsheets for
incorporation into Access databases. These protocols are no longer current,
and have been superseded by more efficient applications using the GPS data
dictionaries. Collected mapping data should be initially stored within GPS unit
data recorders. Raw GPS data should then be downloaded on a daily basis if
possible into Pathfinder Office software, differentially corrected and
converted into ArcView shapefiles. Raw GPS data should be interpreted and
corrected within ArcView, using the customized SHIM Data Dictionary Tool
(ddtool-b4f.avx) that can be downloaded free from the SHIM website
(http://www.shim.bc.ca/). Common point and polygon features must be
linked to their associated stream line through a unique identifier field.
Instructions and ArcView procedures for ensuring that feature points are
correctly linked to unique stream identifiers are also included within the SHIM
Data Dictionary Tool.
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At least one person on each SHIM mapping team must act as a Data Manager
and have completed a RIC certified GPS course in resource mapping.
Acceptable training programs are offered by several agencies, contacts for
which can be obtained from the SHIM mapping committee. The Data Manager
is responsible for training field operators in SHIM procedures and must
provide documentation of protocols implemented to quality assure (QA) data
collection/interpretation and maintain overall quality control (QC) of the
SHIM data should be delivered on a CD-ROM in the following directory
Stream Name Folder
ɷ Photo Subfolder
ɷ Raw GPS Data Subfolder
ɷ Corrected GPS DataSubfolder (if data was post-processed)
ɷ Processed GPS Data Subfolder
ɷ Metadata Subfolder
ɷ SHIM map Subfolder
A single winzip file containing folder and subfolder data should be created
for each stream surveyed. Be sure to select the 'Save Extra Folder Info' option
for the winzip file. For older versions of Winzip (i.e., prior to version 7.0) the
“Recurse Folder” option should also be selected. The required subfolders
should contain the following information:
9.3.1 Photo Subfolder
ɷ Digitized images of all photos taken (jpg format). File naming
based on photo point number (e.g., 4135.jpg). Preferred file size
for jpg images is approximately 100kb with an accepted
maximum size of 200kb.
ɷ A single summary table (Word format) listing all photos taken of
the stream with identifying photo numbers, date of photo capture,
description of features photographed and photo orientation
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Photo Summary Table
(up/down or X stream)
*All jpg photo images must be hotlinked to the photo_point shapefile present
in the processed GPS data subfolder. To do this involves a series of
programming steps within ArcView that are outlined in the appendum at the
end of this module.
9.3.2 Raw GPS Data Subfolder
ɷ Raw GPS data files (in Trimble’s .ssf file format) for all SHIM
mapped stream features (points, lines and polygons).
9.3.3 Corrected GPS Data Subfolder
ɷ Raw GPS data files (in Trimble’s .cor file format) for all SHIM
mapped stream features. Submit only if GPS data were
differentially corrected through post-processing and not through
real time corrections. Reference stations used for post-processing
data must be validated by the Geo-Spatial Reference Unit of the BC
Ministry of Sustainable Resource Management. A listing of
currently validated stations and services can be obtained from the
Base Mapping and Geomatics Services Branch at:
9.3.4 Processed GPS Data Subfolder
Corrected ArcView shapefiles of all mapped stream features. This
includes the associated dbf, sbn, shx, sbx and shp files for each feature
with file names consistent with the feature types used in the SHIM data
dictionary. The line, point and polygon files that should be included as
part of a SHIM mapping project include:
ɷ stream_line.shp – line feature delineating the stream centreline.
Required for all SHIM mapping projects.
ɷ end_point.shp – point feature depicting termination of stream
segment mapping. Must contain completed comment field
providing explanation for why mapping stopped at this point.
Required for all SHIM mapping projects.
ɷ wetland.shp – line feature delineating the extent of wetlands
adjacent to the stream. Recommended but not required.
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ɷ riparian_hab.shp – polygon feature delineating the riparian
habitats adjacent to the stream corridor. Recommended but not
Complete stream files are created in ArcView by merging the corrected
points, lines or polygons from individual mapped stream segments into a
single composite file for each feature type. Each shapefile must be
associated with the parent stream using a unique identifier (denoted by
the shared key_id field in the SHIM Data Dictionary).
GPS data files (in Trimble .ssf or .cor formats) are originally converted
into ArcView shapefiles using the "Export Utility" in Pathfinder Office.
When exporting these files into ArcView make sure that the "Export Setup
Properties" in the Trimble Office software are set to "Features - Export all
Features" and not to "Positions Only."
point features depicting
habitats, conditions or
activities at distinct
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