I have a lake map layer that mistook algae for land and now some of my lakes have a a lot of hole in them and I don't want these holes. I also don't want to delete Islands and I have a lot of lakes.

  • 1
    You could edit the layer with AutoComplete that would simplify the fill and merge together the filled holes with the existing lake. OR you could set up a topology and use the 'Must Not Have Gaps' rule which will fill the holes and you can select all and merge to make a single lake poly.
    – rickD
    Commented May 17, 2016 at 15:12
  • I want to do it on a lake by lake basis.
    – zero
    Commented May 17, 2016 at 15:32
  • Could you obtain a different lake map layer without the holes?
    – GISHuman
    Commented May 17, 2016 at 19:02
  • No, I only have the one layer.
    – zero
    Commented May 18, 2016 at 3:04

5 Answers 5


You can use Union and then make sure the "Gaps Allowed (Optional)" check box is unchecked.

This will fill in any instances of 'holes' within a polygon layer.


According to this help document:

  1. Click the Edit tool on the Editor toolbar and double-click the feature you want to edit.
  2. Right-click the part you want to delete, point to Part, then click Delete.
  3. Right-click anywhere on the map and click Finish Sketch.

You could edit the vertices of the polygon, then delete all vertices of the holes.


You can create a patch in an edit session. Draw a polygon that covers the holes, but does not extend past the lakeshore. You then merge the patch with the lake and all the holes are filled in. With this method, you can work with relatively low precision without negatively affecting your shapes.


Now you can use Eliminate Polygon Part tool to fill in the gaps in the polygons in ArcGIS Pro.

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