Baseline Data

Crop Monitor for AMIS

During the early development stages of the Crop Monitor, we realized there needs to be accurate and subnational crop calendar information, which shows when the cropping seasons occur and the specific crop stages since the stage of the crop impacts the crop’s sensitivity to climatic events. Therefore, subnational crop specific crop calendars were created in order to accurately monitor the four main AMIS crops (maize, rice, soybeans and wheat). The main challenge was developing subnational calendars since most crop calendars are at the national level.

The Crop Monitor countries were first divided into subnational agro-ecological regions bounded by administrative level one units. These regions were developed to suit our in country analysts and to provide geographically accurate crop conditions.

The crop calendars were created using four different phases (Planting – Early Vegetative, Vegetative – Reproductive, Ripening through Harvest and Out of Season) in order to give greater context for our reported crop conditions. The calendars for these subnational regions were initially built using FAO, AMIS, governmental agriculture websites and USDA World Agricultural Outlook data. As we have developed a network of global partners, we have worked with them to refine or replace the original crop calendars. The first calendars were only crop specific but we have since improved the calendars to divide the different cropping seasons (For example: Winter wheat and spring wheat). For the countries that have multiple seasons, the calendars are aligned to display the biggest producing season as the “first” crop and the smaller producing seasons as the second or third crop depending on production.

Crop Monitor for Early Warning

The Crop Monitor for Early Warning countries were first divided into subnational agro-ecological regions. The crop calendars were created using four different phases (Planting – Early Vegetative, Vegetative – Reproductive, Ripening through Harvest and Out of Season) in order to give greater context for our reported crop conditions. The calendars for these subnational regions were initially built using FAO,FEWS NET, and government agriculture websites. As we have developed a network of global partners, we have worked with them to refine or replace the original crop calendars.

Crop Monitor for AMIS

In the process of developing the Crop Monitor for AMIS a need for global crop specific masks was identified in order to accurately monitor the four main AMIS crops (maize, wheat, soybean, and rice). As our base layer we chose the physical area layers from the Spatial Production Allocation Model (SPAM) 2005 v 2.0 product from IFPRI/IIASA. The physical area layers were then converted to a percent per pixel representing the percent of each pixel covered by a specific crop. The individual crop layers were then resampled from 10x10km to 0.05 degrees to match the climate modeling grid (CMG).

In addition to monitoring individual crops the Crop Monitor for AMIS covers multiple growing seasons for these crops. Through the contributions of a number of the partner organizations the wheat crop mask has been split into two separate crop masks, winter planted wheat and spring planted wheat. Work is currently underway to divide the other crop masks into their individual seasons where information is available.

From the base maps individual country data has been switched out with higher resolution national or regional products contributed from the GEOGLAM partner organizations when available. The higher resolution data layers were then aggregated up to the 0.05 degree resolution and replaced the SPAM 2005 product in those countries. In some cases the SPAM 2005 v2.0 product was adjusted based upon partner inputs and data.

Crop Monitor for Early Warning

The crop mask needs for the Crop Monitor for Early Warning (EWCM) differ from those of the Crop Monitor for AMIS in that the countries that are monitored are for the most part not major global producers. The majority of fields in these countries of interest are typically smaller than the AMIS countries. Combined with the large number of crops being monitored it can be difficult to source accurate crop specific masks. So the choice was made to go with a general cropland masks.

The global croplands mask used in the EWCM is a combination of the IIASA/IFPRI Global Hybrid Cropland map and the AFSIS probabilities of occurrence of croplands covering Africa. The croplands mask has a resolution of about 1km at the equator.