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S-map - a new soil spatial information system for New Zealand (current)

  • Added 02 Feb 2016
  • Updated 16 Jun 2020
  • Not Exportable

NOTE: There has been a change in the way the S-map is being made available to users. The S-map primary map layer of soil classes (i.e. delineated areas that are labelled with the soil family name) is no longer freely available to commercial users. Access to this data and associated soil attribute data for commercial use is by negotiation - contact Graeme Anderson (

ACCESS to publically available S-map data is now at

S-map Soil Depth

S-map Soil Drainage

S-map Soil Texture

S-map NZ Soil Classification

S-map's primary map layer is soil classes, i.e. delineated areas that are labelled with the soil family name. Each soil family is defined as a unique combination of attributes (NZSC classification, parent material, rock type, dominant texture and permeability class). Soil classes are further characterised as siblings according to their depth to rock class, stoniness, land type, drainage, texture (more detailed), functional horizons and miscellaneous variant information. The uncertainty of each of these family and sibling attribute classes is specified. Associated with the soil class layer will be additional map layers of fundamental and derived soil properties. The fundamental soil properties are depth (diggability), depth to slowly permeable layer, rooting depth, rooting barrier, horizon thickness, stoniness, clay and sand content. They are developed from sample information and expert knowledge. The derived soil layers are each based on a model (or pedo-transfer function). Some models are simple lookup tables that depend only on the soil class. Others combine various soil, land use, vegetation, climate or topographic attributes in a mathematical formula. Derived layers will include available water (mm), macroporosity, water retention, bulk density, total carbon, total nitrogen, phosphorus, calcium, cation exchange capacity, pH, and phosphorus retention.


Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International

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TagsDownloadable Data, Soil, Soil Depth, Soil Drainage, Soil Texture
RegionsNew Zealand
MetadataISO 19115/19139, Dublin Core

Technical Details

Layer ID 48440
Data type Vector polygon
Feature count 295370
Attributes soilpoly
Services Vector Query API, Web Feature Service (WFS), Catalog Service (CS-W), Atom Feed


Added2 Feb 2016
Last updated7 Sep 2016
Revisions 25 - Browse all revisions
Current revision Imported on Sept. 6, 2016 in NZGD2000 / New Zealand Transverse Mercator 2000. 1682 geometries modified to be OGC compliant. Changelog.
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