This dataset compares historic grassland survey data with contemporary spatial data of habitats in England. The National Vegetation Classification (NVC) community and grassland type were determined for 848 quadrats surveyed at grassland sites in England between 1960 and 1981. A 100m buffer was generated around each individual quadrat which matched the spatial accuracy (±100m) of the quadrat location, to represent a grassland site. These sites were intersected with Natural England's Priority Habitats Inventory in ArcGIS, to indicate the percentage cover of priority habitats found at the grassland sites in 2013. This dataset supersedes the previous version.
Publication date: 2017-04-03
The historic quadrat data was recorded at grassland sites in England between 1960 and 1981, using a standardised methodology. The vegetation in each quadrat was assigned to one of the British National Vegetation Classification (NVC) communities using Tablefit. Quadrats were further classified into one of four grassland types; calcareous grassland, lowland heath and dry acid grassland, mesotrophic grassland and wet grassland. The location of each quadrat surveyed was imported into ESRI ArcGIS v10. A 100m buffer was generated around each individual quadrat to represent a grassland site. To indicate the coverage of semi-natural grassland habitats in 2013, Natural England's Priority Habitats Inventory was used. The percentage and type of priority habitat contained within each site was calculated in ArcGIS, using the tabulate intersection function in the spatial analyst toolbox. The percentage of each site designated as a SSSI was also calculated using Natural England's digital boundary data for SSSIs.