This tool aids in making decisions about conservation, restoration, and planning. The Habitat Priority Planner takes away much of the subjective nature of the process by providing a means of obtaining critical habitat analyses that are consistent, repeatable, and transparent. The program allows users to easily test various ideas and "what if" scenarios on the fly, making it the perfect tool to use in a group setting.
The example on the right shows a group interacting with the Habitat Priority Planner. The pictured results highlight wetlands larger than 100 acres.
For basic information about the tool and testimonials from users, read the product overview page.
- Inventories specific habitat relevant to the study area
- Assesses target habitat conditions with pre-packaged spatial analysis
- Analyzes "what if" scenarios, such as the impact of new development or how restoration might change habitat function
- Involves people, thanks to the fast, interactive environment this easy-to-use system provides
- Creates maps, reports, and data tables to enhance communication and the decision-making process
- Microsoft .NET and Microsoft .NET Support for ArcGIS
- ESRI ArcView 10x or 9x
- ESRI Spatial Analyst
- User Skillset: Beginner to Intermediate
- Base data representing the habitat in your study area. Examples include
- Point, line, or polygon data sets pertinent to project (optional)
Note: Write access to local C-drive for saving files and performing analyses is necessary to use this tool.
Stories from the Field
Planning for Resilient Coastal Communities in New York
The Coastal Inundation Mapping training, Roadmap for Adapting to Coastal Risk approach, and other NOAA resources aided New York partners in mapping and assessing Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy impacts and planning for long-term recovery and resilience.
Establishing Conservation Goals in Southern Maine
The Habitat Priority Planner tool and C-CAP data helped in the development of a strategic conservation plan to preserve local communities for future generations.
Conserving Habitat for the New England Cottontail in Coastal Maine
Coastal managers in Maine employed the Habitat Priority Planner tool and C-CAP data to help identify suitable habitat for the endangered New England cottontail.
Advancing Restoration in the Great Lakes Region
The Habitat Priority Planner and C-CAP data were used to identify and prioritize habitat restoration projects to meet goals identified in the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration Strategy.
Driving Conservation along South Carolina's Coast
The Habitat Priority Planner and participatory mapping techniques helped establish a National Scenic Byway on Edisto Island, South Carolina.
Identifying Priority Habitats for Conservation and Restoration in Coastal Alabama
The Mississippi-Alabama Habitat Mapper and the Habitat Priority Planner are being used to identify high-priority habitats, including those impacted by the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill
Using Geospatial Techniques to Plan for Climate Change Impacts on Coastal Habitats in South Carolina
Partners used the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model and Habitat Priority Planner to identify priority lands to conserve as sea level rises.
Assessing Land-Based Threats to Coral Reef Habitats in Laolao Bay, CNMI
OpenNSPECT and the Habitat Priority Planner were used to assess land based threats and prioritize restoration areas.
Identifying Areas for Water Quality Improvement Projects in Oahu, Hawaii
The Habitat Priority Planner and N-SPECT were used with lidar and land cover data to identify sites that affect water quality in the Ko’olaupoko region.
Compiling Natural Resource Data for Watershed Strategies in Hawaii
The Habitat Priority Planner was used with C-CAP high-resolution land cover data to compile natural resource data for community consideration of a range of watershed management strategies.
Coastal Connections (newsletter), Identifying High-Priority Habitat- April/May 2010.
Stakeholder Engagement Strategies for Participatory Mapping. Participatory mapping can be enhanced by using the Habitat Priority Planner.
The Rip Tide (e-newsletter from New Hampshire Coastal Program), Fall 2008.
Applying the Habitat Priority Planner
Choose a topic below to learn about setting up a spatial analysis and applying the Habitat Priority Planner
Download a short document that describes the spatial analysis process and application of the Habitat Priority Planner for benthic habitat conservation.
Engaging Stakeholders in Coastal Management through Participatory Mapping
Recognizing the importance of public knowledge, perceptions, and attitudes, many coastal managers have moved toward planning and decision-making processes that involve stakeholders. These planning processes are often spatial in nature and can benefit from the use of a geographic information system (GIS). This recorded webinar presentation examines the role of participatory mapping as a technique for engaging stakeholders in decision-making.
Download a short document that describes the spatial analysis process and application of the Habitat Priority Planner for preserving water quality.
Download a short document that describes the spatial analysis process and application of the Habitat Priority Planner for restoration.
Planning for Restoration Using the Habitat Priority Planner and Spatial Analysis
This recorded webinar presentation describes how to set up a spatial analysis process to plan for habitat restoration. It will also describe how to address the management issue spatially using the NOAA Office for Coastal Management’s Habitat Priority Planner tool to identify priority areas for restoration.
Download a short document that describes the spatial analysis process and application of the Habitat Priority Planner for species monitoring.
Download a short document that describes the spatial analysis process and application of the Habitat Priority Planner for marsh migration.
Geospatial Techniques to Plan for Climate Change Impacts on Coastal Habitats
This recorded webinar presentation describes how staff members at a national wildlife refuge worked with geospatial analysts to create conservation strategies that include sea level rise projections. The team paired two geospatial tools for this project. First, the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM) was used to predict potential marsh migration that could result from sea level rise. Next, the Habitat Priority Planner was used along with the SLAMM predictions to identify focal areas to conserve for key management species as habitats shift.
Using Spatial Analysis and the Habitat Priority Planner to Plan for Wetland Migration
This recorded webinar presentation describes how to set up a spatial analysis process for an example climate adaptation management issue focused on wetland migration. It also describes how to address the management issue spatially using the NOAA Office for Coastal Management’s Habitat Priority Planner tool.
Download a short document that describes the spatial analysis process and application of the Habitat Priority Planner for offshore energy siting.
Locating Offshore Wind Energy Sites Using the Habitat Priority Planner
This recorded webinar presentation provides an example of how to use spatial analysis and a decision support tool to help locate appropriate sites for offshore wind energy infrastructure. It describes the functionality of the Habitat Priority Planner tool and provides resources useful for offshore planning.
Provides users with concise information for using the Habitat Priority Planner to meet project goals
Testimonials and Product Page
Presents basic information about the product and testimonials from product users
Frequently Asked Questions
Answers frequently asked questions about version 3.0 of the Habitat Priority Planner
Contains step-by-step installation and tool-use instructions, tool theory, and other useful resources
Send Habitat Priority Planner questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Habitat Priority Planner E-mail List
Join a community of users to exchange ideas, share how you are using the tool, and hear about upcoming opportunities.
Get It Now
HPP for ArcMap 10.2
- Version 3.1 for ArcMap 10.2
- Release date: March 17, 2014
HPP for ArcMap 10.1
- Version 3.1 for ArcMap 10.1
- Release date: September 24, 2012
HPP for ArcMap 10.0
- Version 3.1 for ArcMap 10.0
- Release date: September 24, 2012
HPP for ArcMap 9.3
- Version 2.0
- Release date: September 15, 2009
HPP for ArcMap 9.2
- Version 2.0
- Release date: September 15, 2009
Ask a question anytime by emailing email@example.com.