Inventory, Monitoring and Assessment Program

The Inventory, Monitoring, and Assessment Program (IMAP) provides goals, guidance, and standards for the Department's efforts to systematically evaluate the vegetation, wildlife, and physical natural resources of the State Park System. Evaluations consist of collecting data through various scientific means in each State Park System unit. Data is generally quantitative and consists of counts and measures of natural resources. Examples include measuring stream water quality, the distribution of various species of plants in an area, and counting the number of offspring of endangered animals. The data can be used to make status assessments of a unit's natural resources, such as what resources are present, where the resources are distributed, and how much of a resource is present. Data is also used to detect changes in resources over time so that trends in the unit's health can be ascertained and corrective management action can be taken.

The IMAP support team, located at Natural Resources Division in Sacramento and Service Centers statewide, is composed of professional biologists and technical experts who are responsible for:

  • Assisting park staff in the selection of study methods, development of study designs, and collection of natural resource data in state parks;
  • Working closely with universities and state and federal agencies to coordinate collection of natural resources data;
  • Developing databases and geographic information systems for assessment of park natural resources data; and,
  • Providing assistance with data analysis.

The elements of IMAP include: 


  • Program Basics
    A detailed description of the Inventory, Monitoring and Assessment Program.
  • IMAP Implementation
    Describes how to develop an IMAP plan for a unit, how to select field methods and prepare a sampling design for inventory and monitoring, data analysis techniques, and presents results from IMAP pilot projects at Chino Hills State Park and Wilder Ranch State Park.
  • Data Management
    Describes the IMAP approach to databases and file directories, geographical information systems (GIS), global positioning system (GPS), and sources of spatial data.
  • Help / Training
    Frequently asked questions, discussion board of hot IMAP topics, listings of training opportunities, health and safety tips for field work, and useful links to other websites.
  • IMAP Latest News
    Latest news and announcements from the IMAP.