Setting up domains and subtypes

01-18-2017 02:58 AM
New Contributor

Greetings, I am attempting to configure a webmap for collecting field data at the different wildlife management areas that I frequent near my house. I want to start marking deer sign, hunting locations, areas of interest such as bedding areas, feeding areas, funnels and pinch points.  I would also like to record line data for game trails and such.

 I will be using collector to collect this data.  I've followed the ESRI tutorials on the subject successfully however I am having a bit of difficulty duplicating the process for my needs.....

The disconnect is in setting up the Domains, fields, and subtypes.....Im super close, but somewhere Im missing something.....would I need to create a Gdb for each item, then set up the domains and subtypes then?

for example

gametrail.gdb - line features 

mushroomhunting.gdb - point features

hunting location.gdb - point features

deer sign - point features

I feel like above would be the best approach....

assuming the above is correct, then I would set up domains in each gdb accordingly?

So, visually on the map I dont need to see what type of mushroom there is, just a point feature that shows me there is a mushroom, (I can filter my results as needed) then i want to click on it so it will display the mushroom type, colony size, what its growing on, and the date it was collected....

So Im looking for my end result to be when Im in the field with collector, I want to be able to touch the collect feature and be able to choose first between 


hunt location


deer sign

assuming I click mushroom, the I would like to be able to input

type of mushroom

colony size

what its growing on

date collected 

then from that list, I would like to have a list of pre made options.....for example if I mushroom type I would get a list like



Chicken of the Woods


So i got the rest of it,I have been able to successfuly publish a map to arcgis online and collect points and such just not under the structure I would like it to be in

I apologize for the extremely lengthy question.....but I have been at this for three or four days and have pretty much exhausted my resources.......I am brand new to all this and was introduced to it when i took Intro to GIS and Intermediate GIS last semester at school.......i absolutely fell in love with this stuff......the school i was enrolled in wasn't up to my standards and I have since changed schools and am now majoring in Geography and hope to specialize in GIS.  I dont start school until march, so in the meantime I have been taking esri mooc classes and all i can get elsewhere.  I am also going to subscribe to the esri home use program and start ripping through all the classes they have on there.

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4 Replies
MVP Frequent Contributor

In answer to your first question a gdb (a file geodatabase), is a container for many features classes, tables etc etc. So no, you don't need multiple gdb's 1 for each feature.

Try looking through this :


New Contributor

Thank you so much for the very helpful link.  I'm sure my answer will be found within.....


 edit: Wow, first chance to sit down and start going through some of this........LOTS to learn!  Not sure how I missed all this info.  Thanks again.

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Occasional Contributor III

It does not sound like you need subtypes; I would just set up specific domains in one database and populate them. Next step is to associates a field or fields with a domain.

So once the mushroom feature class is set up, assign the mushroom type domain to mushroom type field. I usually do this with the geoprocessing tool,

but it can also just be done in ArcCatalog using the Fields properties screen.

New Contributor

Thank You Dana, and yes, after spending the last three days reading about geodatabases, domains, fields, and subtypes via the link that Neil shared that is the conclusion i came to....I was able to set up a feature class and attach a domain to it.  Thanks a bunch!

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