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Habitat Mapping

Hudson River Estuary Habitat Mapping

The Research Reserve has partnered with the Cornell University Institute for Resource Information Systems (IRIS), to interpret aerial photographs for vegetative cover type and to produce several habitat mapping products as GIS layers.

All mapping products are publicly available on the NYS GIS Clearinghouse.


Three HRNERR staff perform above-ground vegetation sampling in marsh

HRNERR Vegetation Sampling

Hudson River NERR Vegetation maps

These maps documented 20 vegetation categories within the four Reserve component sites in 1991, 1997, and 2005. The objectives in performing this mapping were to document existing plant community composition and distribution and analyze changes in this composition and distribution over time.

Submerged Aquatic Vegetation

Submerged Aquatic Vegetation

Hudson River Estuary Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV) maps:

New maps are available from 2018 SAV imagery 

These maps  are generated to document the coverage of native SAV and invasive Trapa natans within the Hudson River Estuary from Troy to Hastings-on-Hudson in 1997, 2002, 2007, 2014, 2016 and 2018.  Objectives addressed in the SAV mapping include assessing 1) current distribution and abundance; 2) status and trends of the habitat; 3) ecosystem function of SAV; 4) major threats and impacts to SAV; and 5) needed regulatory protection. An additional SAV mapping product, the Hudson River Estuary Documented SAV, combines the 1997, 2002, 2007,  2014, 2016 and 2018)  mapping layers to provide a management tool that shows areas where SAV currently exists, where it has existed in the past, and where it may return in the future.  Analysis of the imagery indicates that there are 1800 acres less SAV in 2020 than two decades ago.   

For recent presentations on Hudson River SAV see:

Tidal Wetland Vegetation

Tidal Wetland Vegetation

Hudson River Estuary Tidal Wetlands maps

These maps were also produced from the 2007 aerial photo inventory for the Hudson River Estuary from Troy to Hastings-on-Hudson. The tidal wetland mapping objective was to develop an atlas/index of potential impact areas to assist in review of river development plans based on the existing plant community composition and distribution.


Hudson River National Estuarine Research Reserve

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
NOAA National Estuarine Research Reserve System

Tivoli Bays Launch Closure – 2020

The canoe and kayak launch on the Kidd Lane access road at Tivoli Bays WMA is closed for renovations until further notice. At this time, DEC does not have an estimated completion date for the project. Please contact Nathan Ermer at 845-256-3047 for more information about this project. Thank you for your patience and understanding.