Data from the FIA soil indicator were designed to address specific
questions identified under the Montreal
Process. However, these data also may also provide useful information
for researchers and others interested in the current status of America's
Where can I find the Soil Data?
As data become available, they will be posted at FIA's
National P3 data site. Please check this site frequently for
updated information and data availability.
Changes to Methods
As with any new research program, modifications to the sampling and measurement protocols are a necessary part of indicator development and implementation. During the first five years of the soil indicator (1998-2002), evaluation of quality assurance data along with feedback from the field crews, regional trainers, and lab personnel resulted in a series of improvements to the measurement protocol that have enhanced both the efficiency of the program and the data quality. However, these changes also complicate the analysis of data collected across multiple field seasons.
Understanding the changes in the field and laboratory methods is
critical to the correct analysis and interpretation of results. As
a result of changes to the field and laboratory protocols, soil chemical
values from samples collected in 1998 and 1999 are not directly comparable
with those obtained from samples collected since 2000. In general,
combined data from these first five years of implementation should
not be used to develop baseline statistics for state or regional reporting.
- Changes to erosion and compaction measurements (pdf 53K)
- Changes to soil sampling methods (pdf 51K)
to laboratory protocol (pdf 52K)
Examples of Core Tables and Products
The following are examples of how soils data may be presented in future FIA reports:
- Example core table for Erosion and compaction data (pdf 33K)
- Example core table for soil physical properties (pdf 24K)
- Example core table for soil chemical properties (page 1) (pdf 25K) (page 2) (pdf 23K)
Elemental data from soil analyses are typically expressed in units of concentration (e.g., %, mg kg-1, cmolc kg-1). However, because plants exist within a volume of soil, units of volume may be more ecologically meaningful for addressing forest health questions. Conversion of concentration data to volumetric units is done using the soil bulk density (g soil per unit volume).
Last Modified: 02/26/2007