USDA and iTree Species Codes not the same. Why?

If you have questions, comments, and suggestions specific to one or more of the components of the i-Tree Software Suite, this is the place for them! Again, please check the i-Tree website and the FAQs before posting. Relevant topics include UFORE, STRATUM, and the utilities such as MCTI or Storm Damage Assessment Protocol.

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USDA and iTree Species Codes not the same. Why?

Post by leremita » Mon Jul 15, 2013 8:08 pm

I've noticed that some species codes don't match the USDA codes. Is that intentional? A typo?

For instance:
Aesculus californica AECA (USDA); AECA2 (iTree)
Aesculus x carnea AECA2 (USDA); AECA3 (iTree)
Acer species ACER (USDA); AC (iTree)

It can get confusing to use something very similar, but not always the same.
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USDA and iTree Species Codes not the same. Why?

Post by azelaya » Wed Jul 17, 2013 11:09 am

The species codes used in Streets are specific to Streets and previously STRATUM. I don't believe that they were ever intended to specifically match the USDA Plants Database codes although there are probably many similarities.

Unfortunately, the codes used in Streets , Eco (UFORE) and the old MCTI inventory tool were all created by different research teams and all used different codes. Additionally, external inventory systems may use their own species codes or system, which limits the potential of easy integration of existing data.

Yes, I agree this is confusing and creates barriers for users to move data between applications. As was mentioned in a different post, i-Tree version 6 will move the existing applications toward a more integrated model with one set of species codes. This will probably require a crosswalk to handle existing projects but is still in early development.
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