Introduction to Biodiversity Analysis in SuperGIS Toolkit

SuperGIS Toolkit, containing hundreds of Geoprocessing categories, is available for SuperGIS Desktop users. Some functions can be used when the licensing of the extension is obtained. For example, your Spatial Analyst is licensed, and you are allowed to use all the functions in categories within Spatial Analyst. Now, SuperGIS Toolkit is composed of 3D Analysis Tools, Spatial Analysis Tools, Conversion Tools, Feature/Raster Data Processing, Attribute Data Processing, and Statistics and so on.

In addition to plentiful built-in Geoprocessing functions, users can utilize the tool—Process Designer, to customize the workflows of Geoprocessing functions. These customized workflows can be conducted in SuperGIS Desktop directly to process a single record or batch records of spatial data.

SuperGIS Toolkit provided in the newest SuperGIS Desktop now supports Biodiversity Tools. Users who have the licensing of Biodiversity Analyst can apply this tool directly. Detailed descriptions and manipulations are listed below:

Firstly, open the main window of SuperGIS Toolkit in SuperGIS Desktop 3.1a or later version:


And click on “Biodiversity Tools”, you can see the contents in this node. Please refer to the following picture:


Two subgroups, Diversity Analysis and Landscape Indices, are contained in Biodiversity Tools. The Diversity Analysis supports to output data in Feature Class or Raster Class. If you would like to output data in Feature Class, Diversity Analysis supports to output the result of diverse indices to one table. But if you want to output data in Raster Class, you can only output one index at a time. Besides, the Landscape Indices provide Class Metrics, Landscape Metrics, and Patch Metrics.

Basically, as long as Biodiversity Analyst in your SuperGIS Desktop is licensed, you can use Biodiversity Tools in SuperGIS Toolkit. If not, you can design the process of biodiversity analysis through Process Designer on your own, save the designed process as project file in SuperGIS Desktop, and run the project in the SuperGIS Desktop with licensed Biodiversity analyst. Also, you can publish the services in the SuperGIS Server Advanced Edition or later edition with Biodiversity Extension.

Let’s start with Calculate function within Diversity Indices. You can refer to the following picture which shows the setting dialog of this function:


“Sample Area” is used to set the sample area (polygon) to conduct biodiversity analysis. “Species Data” is used to set the distribution data of species for analysis, and the data type should be point. “Count Field” stands for counts of creatures. In “Indices”, users can check multiple indices, and the computing result of each index will form an independent field in the output Feature Class table. The following table shows the correspondence between each index and the field name.

Simpson Sim Menhinick Menh
Inverse Simpson ISim Richness Rich
Gini-Simpson GSim McIntosh’s McIn
Shannon Shan Berger-Parker Berg
Evenness Even Pielou Piel
Margalef Marg Hill Hill

“A” field needs to be set only when “Hill” index is selected. In “Logarithm” field, you can select computation method such as “ln”, “log10” or “log2”. And you can choose to output the Feature Class as point or polygon.

Beneath “Calculate” is “Calculate As Raster” that is similar to “Calculate”. The main difference between “Calculate” and “Calculate As Raster” is based on the output data type. You can see the dialog of “Calculate As Raster” below:


Due to the limitation of data type, you can choose one index only for analysis while outputting data as Raster. Multiple selections are not available. In addition, if you check “Masked Output”, the output Raster Class will be masked according to the input sample area to match the area shape.

In Biodiversity Tools, one function group is Diversity Indices, and the other is Landscape Indices. The three Metrics contained in Landscape Indices stand for different meanings individually. Please refer to the following descriptions:

1. Patch: It reflects the characters of a single patch in the landscape, which could act as the foundation to further compute other indices.
2. Class: It reflects the structural characters for different patches in the landscape.
3. Landscape: It reflects the overall structural characters in the landscape.

Each of these Metrics provides diverse analysis indices as options. Please refer to the following picture:


The result of each index is output as tables and supports multiple selections. If you use the indices in SuperGIS Desktop, the output table will be added into “Table Source” dialog to provide instant content viewing. If you would like to use the indices in services published by SuperGIS Server, we suggest that you additionally employ Feature Attribute To ASCII process after accomplishing analysis process in Process to output the table as TXT file of ASCII. Afterwards, you can adopt IPersistResult interface provided by SuperGIS Toolkit to embed this result into XML Stream and send it to the front end for subsequent custom application.

Basic descriptions for Biodiversity Analysis functions are introduced above. You can publish Biodiversity Analysis function through the Internet with SuperGIS Server Advanced Edition or later edition working with Biodiversity Extension. To know more details, please refer to SuperGIS Server help. 

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