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Does anyone now how to add a group layer with Python in ArcGIS Desktop 10?

I can use arcpy.mapping.AddLayer but surely this is only for an actual layer as opposed to a group layer.

so far I have this

import arcpy
mxd = arcpy.mapping.MapDocument("CURRENT")
df = arcpy.mapping.listdataframes(mxd, "layers")[0]
arcpy.mapping.AddLayer
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2 Answers 2

I do not think ArcPy provides anything to create group layer directly, but there is a simple workaround. You can create a .lyr file which contains a single empty group layer and add it to your map:

groupLayer = arcpy.mapping.Layer(r"EmptyGroupLayer.lyr")
arcpy.mapping.AddLayer(dataFrame, groupLayer, "BOTTOM")

Then you can use the AddLayerToGroup function to add another layers under your group layer.

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I have a couple of layer groups but within them further groups. Let's call them parent and child. the parents are all unique however the children within each parent are the same. EG Incidentals>Birds and Transects>Bird. Is there anyway to avoid the conflict of the two bird group layers having the same name? –  Oliver Burdekin Nov 26 '12 at 18:57

Save an empty group layer as a .lyr file. Then you can use AddLayer to add it to your map and then add new layers from there.

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