Vista User's Manual

The Vista user's manual installs automatically as part of the Vista software package. Or, read below to learn about and download the manual directly. 

Click here to download the full manual

(Please note that this is 8MB PDF that may take several minutes to download)

The manual's content is also fully integrated into the Vista software, which was most recently updated in December 2013. Updates are made for new releases and posted here when available. To download individual sections, click on the headings below.

Section 1
  • Background information on NatureServe and NatureServe Vista
  • An important overview of the planning process behind Vista and its functionality within that process
  • Information about the software and hardware needed to install and run Vista
  • A hands-on Vista exercise
Section 2
  • Details about the data requirements for the Element database, Conservation Value Analyses and Scenario Evaluations
​Section 3
  • Analytical tools, including: category system, weighting system, conservation value summaries, and landscape condition modeling
Section 4
  • Scenario Evaluations
Section 5
  • Site explorer
  • Element Inventory
  • Reports from Vista
Section 6
  • A visual listing of dozens of Vista windows
  • The limitations of the Vista application
Section 7: Appendices
  • NatureServe Conservation Status Definitions
  • Element Occurence Ranks
  • Scale-of-Occurrence Classes for Terrestrial Ecological Elements
  • Land Use Intent Categories
  • Policy Types
  • References

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