I have a polygon feature class with holes in it, which I'll refer to as Polygon 1:

enter image description here

I wish to create a polygon set of circles/clipped circles that are the holes as denoted 1->6 below. I believe I could accomplish this with the Clip tool and use of an overlaying polygon with the hole deleted, specifically this polygon, which I'll refer to as Polygon 2:

enter image description here

My understanding of the clip tool is that then I need to clip Polygon 2 by Polygon 1 leaving only the circles/clipped circles 1->6. As such I ran the Clip tool with the following inputs:

Input Features = Polygon2

Clip Features = Polygon1

I did not get the expected output, but rather a replica of Polygon1, see here:

enter image description here

I also tried reversing the inputs, the result is exactly the same.

What is the error in my understanding or my approach?

  • 2
    Try the union tool then delete the larger polygon with the holes. – Hornbydd Aug 22 '17 at 7:56
  • Keenan Gebze's answer is correct, an alternative would be symmetrical difference. The clip tool works by selecting the areas present in both feature classes, which is why you reproduced polygon 1. – RoperMaps Aug 22 '17 at 9:01

You should have used the ERASE (or difference) tool to obtain the holes:

inputFeature = Polygon 2
eraseFeature = Polygon 1


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