How to use this product
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- Purpose of the product
- Using Census Agricultural Region Boundary Files with other boundary files
- Comparison to the 2001 Census Agricultural Regions Boundary File
The 2006 Census Agricultural Regions Digital Boundary File portrays the boundaries used for the 2006 Census of Agriculture collection and dissemination activities and as such often extend as straight lines into bodies of water.
The 2006 Census Agricultural Regions Cartographic Boundary File was created to support the spatial analysis and thematic mapping of 2006 Census of Agriculture when realistic shorelines are required.
With the appropriate computer software, the CAR boundary files provide the framework for thematic mapping — particularly choropleth mapping. The shorelines were integrated with the boundaries to enable users to easily shade the land polygons. Geographic identifiers provide the linkage between the statistical data and the geographic area boundaries. The CAR boundary files are positionally consistent with the 2006 Road Network File, which can provide additional geographic context for mapping applications.
When considering how to use the Census Agricultural Regions Boundary Files, users should be aware of the compatibility of these files with other spatial information files. Some of the mapping products available are:
Agricultural Ecumene Census Division Digital and Cartographic Boundary Files
The Agricultural ecumene boundary files contain generalized ecumene boundaries. It is suitable for thematic mapping at a small-scale when displaying statistical data aggregated to the census division level.
The 2006 Agricultural Ecumene Census Division Cartographic Boundary File is not positionally consistent with the CAR cartographic boundary file. Users who wish to use the Agricultural Ecumene Census Division Cartographic Boundary File with the CAR cartographic boundary file should consider their positional differences. However, the 2006 Agricultural Ecumene Census Division Digital Boundary File is positionally consistent with the CAR digital boundary file.
Digital and Cartographic Boundary Files
The Geography Division of Statistics Canada has produced and disseminated a series of 12 digital and cartographic boundary file products. Each contains the boundaries relating to a standard geographic level (e.g., census divisions). In addition, each product includes a separate file containing supplementary hydrography that supports mapping inland water bodies (i.e., large inland lakes and double-line rivers). The CAR boundary files are positionally consistent with these files since they were all created from the same base.
In deciding which set of boundary files to use, one should consider what other geospatial data will be used in conjunction with the boundary files.
The positional accuracy of the 2006 Census Agricultural Region Boundary Files does not support cadastral, surveying or engineering applications.
The CAR boundary files will not be precise if plotted at a larger scale than the scale of the source material used in their creation. In particular, the shorelines originally digitised at a scale of 1:1,000,000 (outside census metropolitan areas and census agglomerations) will not support large-scale mapping.
The CAR boundary files are recommended for regional scale mapping. Boundaries can be mapped at scales ranging from 1:1,000,000 to 1:5,000,000.
Creation of the boundaries for the Census Agricultural Regions Digital Boundary File
Geography Division's 2006 Census Consolidated Subdivisions Digital Boundary File of all 2,341 census consolidated subdivisions (CCSs) in Canada, served as the starting point for creating the CAR boundaries. In all provinces except Saskatchewan, census agricultural regions are defined as groups of one or more adjacent census divisions, while census divisions, in turn, are defined as groupings of CCSs. As a result, in these nine provinces the CAR boundaries were created by aggregating the polygons that formed individual census consolidated subdivisions, first to the census division level, and then up to the CAR level. However, in Saskatchewan CARs are not defined as groupings of census divisions but rather aggregations of census consolidated subdivisions directly. Therefore, in Saskatchewan the CAR boundaries were created by aggregating the polygons forming individual census consolidated subdivisions directly up to the CAR level.
Creation of the boundaries for the Census Agricultural Regions Cartograhpic Boundary File
The completed Census Agricultural Regions Digital Boundary File was the basis for creating the cartographic version. The shoreline from Geography Division's 2006 Provinces and Territories Cartographic Boundary File was used to clip the Census Agricultural Regions Digital Boundary File. The clipping process has a "cookie-cutter" like effect and the result is a CAR boundary file with shoreline.
Attribute information for the Census Agricultural Regions Boundary Files
Four main attributes were associated with the polygons in the CAR boundary files. The CAR name (CARname) and code (CARuid) were obtained from the Census Agricultural Regions Atttribute File, which is updated prior to each Census of Agriculture with information from the provinces. The remaining two attributes, the province or territory code (PRuid) and Census of Agriculture standard geographic area code (AGuid), were both derived from the CARuid field.
The Census Agricultural Regions Boundary Files for Canada contain the boundaries of all 82 census agricultural regions delineated for the 2006 Census of Agriculture. A census agricultural region is a sub-provincial geographic area used primarily by the Census of Agriculture for disseminating agricultural statistics. In most provinces, census agricultural regions usually comprise groups of adjacent census divisions. The exceptions are in Saskatchewan, where census agricultural regions are made up of groups of adjacent census consolidated subdivisions that do not necessarily respect census division boundaries, and in Prince Edward Island where each of the three existing census divisions (counties) is treated as a census agricultural region for data dissemination purposes. Census agricultural regions are not defined in Yukon Territory, the Northwest Territories or Nunavut. In the Prairie provinces, census agricultural regions are commonly referred to as crop districts.
The CAR boundary files consist of polygons representing the census agricultural regions. In the cartographic version, there are many more polygons than census agricultural regions primarily because additional polygons are needed to represent islands. Every polygon encoded as a census agricultural region has a CARuid (a code to uniquely identify each census agricultural region) associated with it. The CAR boundary files are available at the national level only.
The 2006 Agricultural Regions Boundary Files are not compatible with the 2001 Agricultural Regions Boundary File.
Hydrography (consisting of the Great Lakes and selected large inland lakes) has been removed.
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