Metadata : Vegetation Communities in the Howard Sand Plains Site of Conservation Significance


Metadata Details:

Name:AS/NZS ISO 19115 Geographic Information - Metadata, ANZLIC Metadata Profile


Date Metadata Extracted:2022-10-02

Date Metadata Last Updated:2019-10-22

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ANZLIC Identifier:9577E8038E5F6289E0530101007FB6D6

Title: Vegetation Communities in the Howard Sand Plains Site of Conservation Significance

Citation Date:2019-10-22

Date Type:creation

Custodian:Department of Environment, Parks and Water Security



This dataset contains spatial polygons identifying vegetation communities within the Howard Sand Plains Site of Conservation Significance (SOCS). The survey area covers approximately 260 km2 and is located 10km east of Darwin. On-ground surveys were undertaken in 2013 and mapping is considered suitable to use at a scale of 1:10,000.

The Howard Plains SOCS area is recognised as being of international significance due to the concentration of threatened species. A focus of the study was to identify areas that are important for conservation, including sensitive sandsheet heath, the carnivorous plant genus Utricularia and threatened herb Typhonium taylori. Twenty- one vegetation communities are described and mapped.

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Spatial Domain:

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Dataset Status

Dataset ID:


Character Set: Latin 1


Maintenance and Update Frequency:notPlanned

Data Currency Start Date:2013-01-01

Data Currency End Date:2019-10-22

Access Constraint:

Download the spatial data package (contains spatial data, maps and reports) via

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You are free to copy, communicate and adapt the licensed material, provided that you abide by the licence terms (including Attribution) and attribute the licensed material using the statement:

Supplied by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. Copyright Northern Territory Government.

Data Quality

Lineage:Visual interpretation of aerial photography flown in June 2010 was undertaken to delineate vegetation communities in the seasonally saturated floodplains of the Howard River catchment. An iterative process of image interpretation and field survey to ground truth the observed patterns was carried out in the late wet season and early dry season. Vegetation was quantified in 20m by 20m plots to provide floristic and structural data. These data were combined with pre-existing plot data held by the Northern Territory Herbarium in the Vegetation Site Database (VSD) to compile descriptions of the vegetation communities

Positional Accuracy:Polygon dataset based on ground surveys and aerial photographic interpretation at approximately 1:10,000 scale. The datasets have not been updated since publication. There may be a high degree of inaccuracy when comparing this data to the present day extent of this vegetation type.

Attribute Accuracy:The attribute naming format uses 10 characters with no spaces to be suitable for an ESRI shape-file format. An alias attribute name is applied for storage in an ESRI file geo-database format.
Polygons have been assigned values for the attributes described in the data dictionary in this metadata record.

Logical Consistency:GIS editing tools were used to rectify all overshoots and undershoots in line work. Polygon topology rules applied are; must not overlap, must not have gaps and each polygon has only one label.



Data Requests OfficerDepartment of Environment, Parks and Water SecurityGeospatial Services Branch (on behalf of department)

Data Dictionary

AttributeAttribute DescriptionPossible CodeCode Description
01. SURV_NMEAlias: Survey Name
02. SURV_CODEAlias: Survey Code.
An abbreviated name used for department storage purposes representing the survey name and followed by the survey scale.
03. NTMU_IDAlias: NT Map Unit Identifier - Vegetation Community.
A unique identifier for polygons and the survey descriptions within them. Each map unit identifier is described in the technical report.
04. SPA_MIXAlias: Spatial Mix
Provides general information on both the spatial extent and makeup of the discrete sub-associations or floristic groups within the one map unit. Map units may be homogenous (pure) or mixed (mosaics). Spatially mixed map units are defined as those that have a number of discrete vegetation types within a map unit boundary.
05. COM_DESCAlias: Veg Community Description
06. NVIS_L2Alias: (NVIS Level 2) Structural Formation
The description of structural formation should include dominant growth form, cover classes, height classes, and height classifier with corresponding growth form for the ecologically dominant stratum of the vegetation type/community.
07. L5_ASSOCAlias: NVIS Level 5 Association
For each stratum (U - upper, M - mid, G - Ground), the description should include floristic information plus the structural formation. Dominant stratum is indicated by a +.
08. DISTRIBAlias: Distribution
09. SIGSPECIESAlias: Significant Species
10. FLOODPLAINAlias: Flood Plain
Notes if the polygon is within the flood plain using 1 = Yes and 0 = No.
12. AREA_HAAlias: Area (Hectares)
The area of the polygon measured in Hectares.

Supplementary Information

D.T. Liddle, P. Harkness, J. Westaway, D.L. Lewis and I.D. Cowie (2013)
Vegetation communities and plant biodiversity values of the seasonally saturated lands of the Howard Sand Plains Site of Conservation Significance in the Northern Territory of Australia.
Report to the Australian Government Caring for our Country initiative. Northern Territory Government Department of Land Resource Management. Palmerston.

Download report (PDF) from NT Library

This record maintained using the NTLIS Metadata Tool