Desert Tortoise Recovery Spatial Decision Support System (Version 2)

Since 2007, the Redlands Institute has been working with the USFWS Desert Tortoise Recovery Office (DTRO) to create a threats-based spatial decision support system to help the DTRO coordinate species recovery activities such as research, monitoring and management actions. At its core the system uses spatial characterizations of existing threats combined with a weighted threat-stress conceptual model to estimate changes in stresses for tortoise populations due to specific recovery actions.

V2 2009-2010
The second iteration of the SDS, completed in 2010, improved the calculation ability of the system to the point where it can make broad estimates of the increase in stresses due to specific increases in threats. The RI team was able to use the improved system to perform a proof of concept calculation for the
BLM that estimates the increase in threat-based stresses due to the proposed siting of a utility scale solar facility in the Mojave desert.

Key New Features
• A conceptual model manager (CMM) was introduced to manage definitions and relations ships between entities
• The conceptual model was expanded to include all demographic change factors to population change
• Threat –threat, and threat stress relationships were built from ground up
• The strengths of relationships estimated from online surveys of experts, and stored in the CMM
• The SDS engine executed dynamically against the information in the CMM



URL (No Longer Available)

For Application Domains

Threatened And Endangered Species Conservation

Decision Problem Types Targeted

Alternative Evaluation

Status Assessment

Domain Knowledge Modeling Area

Species Threat And Stress Modeling

Planning And Decision Process Phases/Steps Served

Condition Analysis And Assessment

Design Requirement Development

Domain Data Analysis

Domain Data Model Development

Domain Knowledge Process Model Development

Evaluation Criteria Specification

Impact Analysis

Rank Alternatives

Scenario Simulation And Comparison

Specify Criterion Weight


Methods And Techniques Implemented

Analytical Hierarchy Process

Opinion Survey

Pairwise Comparison


Weighted Linear Combination

Systems Functional Components

Analysis Results Exploration Support

Conceptual Model Development Support

Data Management

GIS Analysis Integration

GIS Display Integration

Model/Service Management

Process Flow Control


Input Type

Conceptual Models

Spatial Dataset


Input Data Format

ESRI Geodatabase Feature Class

Microsoft Excel (.Cvs)

Raster ESRI Geodatabase Raster Dataset

Output Type

Conceptual Models



Output Data Format

ESRI Geodatabase Feature Class

Microsoft Excel (.Cvs)

Analysis Extent

All (User Defined Analysis Extent)

Analysis Unit

All (User Defined Unit Of Observation)


Windows 7

Windows Vista

Software Required


Web Enabled

False ^^ Http://Www.W3.Org/2001/Xmlschema#Boolean

Scientific Expertise Level Required

Some Scientific Background

Technical Expertise Level Required

Extensive Computer/GIS Programming Skills

Development Status

Prototype Being Applied

Tool Maker

The Redlands Institute (RI)

Contact Person

Nathan Strout

Parent Categories

Software Tools And Models - All

First Created


Decision Process Activity Types Served

Alternative Ranking, Decision Making

Condition Analysis And Assessment

Data Development, Management And Analysis

Decision Alternatives Generation, Scenario Simulation

Domain Knowledge Modeling


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IntroductionPlanning/Decision ContextPlanning And Spatial Decision ProcessSpatial Planning And Decision Problem TypesMethods And Techniques
methods and techniques; methodology
TechnologyData And Domain KnowledgePeople And ParticipationResources