shrug-l: National Hydrography Dataset (NHD)

Abbey, Edwin Edwin.Abbey at
Wed Feb 15 13:06:39 EST 2012

Good afternoon,
The National Hydrography Dataset 24K database is the federally recognized database of the surface waters of the nation.  The Florida Department of Environmental Protection has a stewardship agreement with the United States Geological Survey to maintain Florida's portion of that data.  The Florida NHD team, located in Tallahassee, consists of 3 editors, 1 editor/QA manager, and me, the project manager.
The Florida NHD data is available from the FDEP ftp site<>  and is viewable using MapDirect<>.  This week I am meeting with representatives from USGS to discuss how the NHD is being used in Florida, what works well and what needs improvement.  I am requesting feedback from you, the GIS community, to get a better understanding of what we can do to enhance the value of the NHD and better support your needs.
Whether your primary use of the NHD is supplementary data for maps or water quality sampling, your responses will help paint the overall picture for us.  Improvements can be anything from needing additional feature types or subtypes ("secondary artificial path to represent overflow out of a reservoir" or "Canal, construction type earthen or impermeable lining"), to readying it for use with ArcHydro, to wanting a web-based means to submit GPS coordinates of new or improved geometries of features.
In December, we completed a statewide database maintenance effort to improve the existing features within the database.  Attribute checks were performed looking for contiguous and non-branched GNIS names, GNIS IDs and reach codes, missing reach codes, artificial paths missing WBComID values, reach codes assigned to multiple features, etc.  Topology and network connectivity were also part of the focus.  The latest release of the Florida NHD represents a snapshot of Florida's portion of the National NHD database as of November 2011.  An upcoming release will include the final edits on the maintenance lite effort that occurred since November.
The end of our maintenance period also marked an editing hiatus to allow the USGS to upgrade the customized tools and data exchange methods that the stewards use to revise the NHD.  Full aerial imagery revision is scheduled to resume when USGS provides the new tools, which we anticipate within the next week or two.
The NHD team welcomes any local knowledge that can contribute to a more accurate database.  Of particular interest are new/missing features, updated features and feature names. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, please contact me at the email address below.


Edwin Abbey
NHD Coordinator - Environmental Manager
Watershed Data Services Section
Florida Department of Environmental Protection
2600 Blair Stone Road, MS 3526
Tallahassee, Florida  32399
phone:  850-245-8550
fax:  850-245-7571
Edwin.Abbey at<mailto:Edwin.Abbey at><>

Please take a few minutes to share your comments on the service you received from the department by clicking on this link DEP Customer Survey<>.
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