Introduction to 'ausplotsR'

'ausplotsR' is an R package for live extraction and preparation of TERN AusPlots ecosystem monitoring data. Through 'ausplotsR', users can: (1) directly obtain plot-based data on vegetation and soils across Australia, and (2) preprocess these data into structures that facilitate the visualisation and analysis of ausplots data. Data preprocessing includes the computation of species occurrence, vegetation fractional and single cover, growth form, and basal area (see below for details).


The 'ausplotsR' package currently includes 6 functions:

  • 'get_ausplots': Extracts AusPlots data in R. The stating point for any AusPlots data exploration and analysis in R. 
  • 'species_table': Generates species occurrence matrices using the chosen scoring method (i.e. presence/absence, cover, frequencey, or IVI index) from a data frame of individual raw intercept hits (generated from AusPlots data using the 'get_ausplots' function).
  • `fractional_cover: Calculates fractional cover (i.e., the proportional cover of green vegetation, dead vegetation and bare substrate) from a data frame of individual raw intercept hits (generated from AusPlots data using the 'get_ausplots' function).
  • 'growth_form_table': Generates occurrence matrices for NVIS plant growth forms in plots using the chosen scoring method (i.e. presence/absence, percent cover or species richness -number of species assigned to a particular growth form-) from a data frame of individual raw intercept hits (generated from AusPlots data using the 'get_ausplots' function).
  • 'single_cover_value': Calculates a total vegetation cover by height and/or growh form per site from a data frame of individual raw intercept hits (generated from AusPlots data using the 'get_ausplots' function). In this fucntion cover can be subsetted to vegetation over a specified height and/or by plant growth forms. By default, vegetation cover is calculated per plot for tree growth forms of 5 metres or higher (i.e. forests).
  • 'basal_area': Calculates basal area (or number of basal wedge hits) for each plot using the raw basal wedge data (generated from AusPlots data using the 'get_ausplots' function).