Science Inventory

ANALYTICAL TOOLS INTERFACE FOR LANDSCAPE ASSESSMENTS (ATTILA) USER MANUAL

Citation:

Wade, T G. AND D W. Ebert. ANALYTICAL TOOLS INTERFACE FOR LANDSCAPE ASSESSMENTS (ATTILA) USER MANUAL. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, EPA/600/R-04/083, 2005.

Impact/Purpose:

The primary objectives of this research are to:

Develop methodologies so that landscape indicator values generated from different sensors on different dates (but in the same areas) are comparable; differences in metric values result from landscape changes and not differences in the sensors;

Quantify relationships between landscape metrics generated from wall-to-wall spatial data and (1) specific parameters related to water resource conditions in different environmental settings across the US, including but not limited to nutrients, sediment, and benthic communities, and (2) multi-species habitat suitability;

Develop and validate multivariate models based on quantification studies;

Develop GIS/model assessment protocols and tools to characterize risk of nutrient and sediment TMDL exceedence;

Complete an initial draft (potentially web based) of a national landscape condition assessment.

This research directly supports long-term goals established in ORDs multiyear plans related to GPRA Goal 2 (Water) and GPRA Goal 4 (Healthy Communities and Ecosystems), although funding for this task comes from Goal 4. Relative to the GRPA Goal 2 multiyear plan, this research is intended to "provide tools to assess and diagnose impairment in aquatic systems and the sources of associated stressors." Relative to the Goal 4 Multiyear Plan this research is intended to (1) provide states and tribes with an ability to assess the condition of waterbodies in a scientifically defensible and representative way, while allowing for aggregation and assessment of trends at multiple scales, (2) assist Federal, State and Local managers in diagnosing the probable cause and forecasting future conditions in a scientifically defensible manner to protect and restore ecosystems, and (3) provide Federal, State and Local managers with a scientifically defensible way to assess current and future ecological conditions, and probable causes of impairments, and a way to evaluate alternative future management scenarios.

Description:

ATtlLA is an ArcView extension that allows users to easily calculate many common landscape metrics. GIS expertise is not required, but some experience with ArcView is recommended. Four metric groups are currently included in ATtILA: landscape characteristics, riparian characteristics, human stressors and physical characteristics. There are also four display options to view metric results. ATtlLA is written in Avenue, Arc View's programming language, and is designed to accommodate spatial data from a variety of sources.

This guide provides basic information on installing and using ATtILA. It also provides information on sources of data compatible with ATtILA. However, it is not meant to provide background in landscape ecology. It is the user's responsibility to make appropriate use of ATtlLA output when conducting analyses or assessments. Users should also have some experience with spatial analysis and spatial data to ensure proper use of ATtILA. New users should read through this manual at least once to familiarize themselves with potential pitfalls associated with spatial data, ArcView limitations, or ATtlLA processes. Important points are usually identified by italics in this document. A collection of appendices are included that contain a metric glossary, default land cover coding schemes, sample metadata, and more detailed information on some methods used in ATtILA. Please report bugs and forward comments to: LEBProiects@epa.gov and include "ATtILA" in the subject line.

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (PUBLISHED REPORT/MANUAL)
Product Published Date: 10/05/2005
Record Last Revised: 02/27/2006
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 99753

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL EXPOSURE RESEARCH LABORATORY

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES DIVISION

LANDSCAPE ECOLOGY BRANCH