I am an IT guy, not a biologist or ecologist, but have ended up with (roughly) the task "given this Latitude/Longitude pair, return the 'habitat' at that location". The points of interest in practice are likely to come from Europe or North America, but could come from anywhere. All data points will be terrestrial, not marine. What habitat means isn't fully defined, and I'm looking for a best-practice answer.

At this point I thus have a question: "what are the well-regarded global habitat classification systems?". A basic search leads me to the IUCN Red List Habitat classification 3.1. From there, I find some nice recent research work by Jung et al that attempts to map the world onto an IUCN habitat type by combining data from a Koppen-Geiger climate classification system, from Copernicus land-cover data and from an ecoregion+biome classification coming from the WWF. This classification has had a number of iterations, but currently seems to have 867 ecoregions in 14 biomes. The resulting map is at approx. 100m resolution and maps on to 47 of the IUCN habitats.

To my amateur, all of this seems great, but is it the state-of-the-art? Or are there other habitat classification schemes out there? Where should I be reading?

Many thanks indeed for any help and apologies in advance if I have broken any rules of the site - this is my first post.


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