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    Author(s): Kevin McGarigal; Barbara J. Marks
    Date: 1995
    Source: Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-GTR-351. Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. 122 p
    Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)
    Station: Pacific Northwest Research Station
    PDF: Download Publication  (885 KB)


    This report describes a program, FRAGSTATS, developed to quantify landscape structure. FRAGSTATS offers a comprehensive choice of landscape metrics and was designed to be as versatile as possible. The program is almost completely automated and thus requires little technical training. Two separate versions of FRAGSTATS exist: one for vector images and one for raster images. The vector version is an Arc/Info AML that accepts Arc/Info polygon coverages. The raster version is a C program that accepts ASCII image files, 8- or 16-bit binary image files, Arc/Info SVF files, Erdas image files, and IDRISI image files. Both versions of FRAGSTATS generate the same array of metrics, including a variety of area metrics, patch density, size and variability metrics, edge metrics, shape metrics, core area metrics, diversity metrics, and contagion and interspersion metrics. The raster version also computes several nearest neighbor metrics.

    In this report, each metric calculated by FRAGSTATS is described in terms of its ecological application and limitations. Example landscapes are included, and a dis-cussionis provided of each metric as it relates to the sample landscapes. Several important concepts and definitions critical to the assessment of landscape structure are discussed. The appendices include a complete list of algorithms, the units and ranges of each metric, examples of the FRAGSTATS output files, and a users guide describing how to install and run FRAGSTATS.

    Publication Notes

    • Visit PNW's Publication Request Page to request a hard copy of this publication.
    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    McGarigal, Kevin; Marks, Barbara J. 1995. FRAGSTATS: spatial pattern analysis program for quantifying landscape structure. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-GTR-351. Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. 122 p


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    Landscape ecology, landscape structure, landscape pattern, landscape analysis, landscape metrics, spatial statistics

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