National Soil Interpretative Information - Soil Attribute Data - Databases & Reports
There is a wide array of sources for electronic soil attribute data within the NRCS. Soil databases and information are managed and delivered by many independent systems, only some of which are integrated. This page summarizes the available National Databases. Some users may require the data in report format, whereas, others may want the actual database itself.
This site centralizes NRCS GIS soil data distribution. Both Spatial and Attribute (tabular) data are available for download. Tabular data is provided as a set of ASCII delimited files. It is important to also use the MS Access template which defines the linkages and structure of the database.
Alternatively, the user can generate a variety of reports (chosen from a list of themes) for one soil survey area at a time.
National Soil Characterization Data (Laboratory Data)
Delimited text files
Reports generated on screen
Soil Characterization Data is stored and maintained by the NSSC Soil Survey Laboratory. This database has thousands of entires for individual soil pedons that have undergone laboratory analysis. Characterization data can include: pH, cation-exchange capacity, bulk density, clay mineralogy, percent carbon.
Users unfamiliar with a given soil, may want to consult with a local soil scientist to determine how well a given pedon represents its soil series for the area of interest.
"Official Soil Series Description" (OSD) is a term applied to the particular soil profile description, approved by NRCS, that defines a specific soil series in the United States. Basically, the OSDs serve as specifications for identifying and classifying soils.
The Official Soil Series Descriptions database is a national collection of more than 18,000 detailed soil series descriptions covering the United States.