Landscape Metrics with R, SDMTools, ImageJ and Bio7

February 2, 2012

(This article was first published on » R, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)


Landscape metrics were developed to analyze spatial patterns of landscapes (e.g. composition and spatial arrangement). In R it is possible to calculate these metrics with the “SDMTools” package. Bio7 offers an easy to use interface to R and ImageJ and can use these tools to simplify a workflow to analyze image data (e.g. vegetation data) with landscape metrics. A typical workflow would include to cluster available image data into different classes and then analyze the data with the available metrics.

In the video below a simple artificial example is given of the workflow in Bio7 with the help of ImageJ, R and the “SDMTools” package:

Beside this possibility it is also possible to calculate a subset of landscape metrics with a Java API available in Bio7 for simulation purposes.


Landscape metrics algorithms are quite similar to some algorithms which are default available in ImageJ and these measurements can maybe complement an analysis of landscape structures, see:

Be aware that it is of importance to define the neighborhood rule (e.g. 4- neighbor rule or 8-neighbor rule) beside several other aspects which have to be considered. For an overview about landscape analysis and landscape ecology follow the link to a literature database at the end of this post.

Related to this article:

Creating fractal categorical maps and images with Bio7

Supervised classification of images with Bio7 and R

SDMTools package

Literature (see Landscape Analysis – if you know good papers or books let me know!)

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