Analyzing Remotely Sensed Forest Data

Provides tools for analyzing remotely sensed forest data, including functions for detecting treetops from canopy models, outlining tree crowns and generating spatial statistics.


ForestTools 0.2.0


Although this can cause backward compability issues, I felt it was necessary to rename the following functions:

  • TreetopFinder -> vwf (stands for Variable Window Filter)

  • SegmentCrowns -> mcws (stands for Marker-Controlled Watershed Segmentation)

  • SpatialStatistics -> sp_summarise

Reasons for the changes are:

  1. To follow the convention of avoiding capitalized function names.
  2. To bring more specificity to the underlying algorithms involved.
  3. To credit the developers of said algorithms by using the names assigned to them.
  4. To acknowledge the fact that alternative algorithms are available for both finding trees and segmenting crowns.

In addition, I've made the following changes to vwf (formerly TreetopFinder):

  • Extended the default value of the maxWinDiameter argument to 99. Note that this value sets the maximum width in cells of the widest allowable window diameter. As explained in the documentation, this argument is to prevent the function from gobbling up too much memory, and can be disabled by setting to NULL.
  • In addition to controlling the maximum window diameter, the user can now tweak the behaviour of the minimum diameter as well. Essentially, the smallest window will always be a 3x3 cell window, regardless of the computed window radius. The neighborhood of this smallest window can be set to either a rook or a queen case contiguity using the minWinNeib argument.
  • I've removed the function's compability with the TileManager package. Although I had put considerable effort into adding this feature initially, I've realized that A) no one was using it, B) it is preferable for the user to manage tiles him or herself instead of having them managed "under the hood" by the vwf function. Let me know if you thought this feature was useful and perhaps I can write a vignette suggesting preferable ways to manage a tiled CHM.

ForestTools 0.1.5

  • Fixed a persitent bug in 'TreeTopFinder' whereby CHMs with imprecise cell sizes (i.e.: cell dimensions that aren't accurate after a certain number of decimals), would cause issues with the shape of the focal windows. Internally, CHM cell dimensions are now rounded to the fifth decimal.

ForestTools 0.1.4

  • Add a new option for generating polygonal tree crowns with 'SegmentCrowns' using GDAL utilities from OSGeo4W. See documentation for 'SegmentCrowns' as well as new vignette: "Options for creating polygonal crown maps".

ForestTools 0.1.2

  • Added the 'Quesnel' dataset. Added a new vignette: "Calculating inventory attributes using Forest Tools".

ForestTools 0.1.1

  • Modified 'SegmentCrowns' function so that it can produce tree crowns in polygon format. The function will also calculate crown area, and filter out crowns that are not associated with a treetop point location.

  • Changed name of 'TreeTopSummary' function to 'SpatialStatistics'. This reflects its new functionality, which allows crown maps to be inputted as well as treetop locations.

ForestTools 0.1.0

  • Initial release of ForestTools

Reference manual

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0.2.0 by Andrew Plowright, a year ago

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Browse source code at

Authors: Andrew Plowright

Documentation:   PDF Manual  

GPL (>= 3) license

Imports imager, sp, APfun, raster, rgeos, methods

Suggests testthat, knitr, rmarkdown

See at CRAN