BioSonics, USA, has released Visual Habitat 2.0 (VH2), specialised software for the assessment and mapping of aquatic habitat features including seagrass, bathymetry, and various substrate types. This upgraded version includes tools to generate full-colour, interpolated maps with bathymetric contours. VH2 allows users to interpolate and form gridded data using 3 different methods; Triangulated Linear Interpolation, Inverse Distance Weighting, and Ordinary Kriging.
Users can print maps directly or export their results as KML, shapefile, or image files for use in Google Earth or ArcGIS. VH2 also automatically computes grid statistics including the area, water volume, and plant and volume. Existing users can download VH2 at no cost and a demo version is available for new users.
With the release of VH2, BioSonics is pioneering creative solutions using their scientific echosounders and software. VH2 software provides the link to the complete solution for visualising aquatic ecosystems and easily monitoring changes over time. The software brings accurate, reliable map-making without the investment and learning curve associated with using GIS. The results have been excellent when compared with previously mapped areas, according to BioSonics spokesman Eric Munday.