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seascape models

Making google maps

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One of the fun things you can do with maps in R is make rasters and shapes that plot on Google Earth. All you really need to do is convert your spatial data to lon-lat coordinates then use one of the KML packages to save the layer as a KML, which can then be viewed in Google Earth. Here is a screen shot of an example from data in my R spatial course.

Here is how to do it for a raster. Here we export the seagrass raster data (available here) from my R Spatial Course as KML. You will need the plotKML package and its dependencies.

First up load the data

rseagrass <- raster('raster seagrass.grd')

Then convert to lon-lat

rsg.ll <- projectRaster(rseagrass, crs = "+proj=longlat +ellps=WGS84", method = 'ngb')

We are using the nearest neighbour ('ngb') interpolation here, because the seagrass raster is categorical (0/1 for absence/presence of seagrass).

Finally pick some colours and save as a KML

sgcols <- c('lightblue', 'seagreen')
KML(rsg.ll, 'Seagrass_MoretonBay', col = sgcols)

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