I am trying to extract one LULC class (e.g. cropland) for the entire globe from the MODIS global lulc. How it can be done? Code I am using to display global lulc is:

    var cover = ee.Image('MODIS/051/MCD12Q1/2012_01_01').select('Land_Cover_Type_1');
    var cover_palette = [
    'aec3d4', // water
    '152106', '225129', '369b47', '30eb5b', '387242', // forest
    '6a2325', 'c3aa69', 'b76031', 'd9903d', '91af40',  // shrub, grass
    '111149', // wetlands
    'cdb33b', // croplands
    'cc0013', // urban
    '33280d', // crop mosaic
    'd7cdcc', // snow and ice
    'f7e084', // barren
    '6f6f6f'  // tundra

    Map.addLayer(cover, {min: 0, max: 17, palette: cover_palette },  
                'Land Cover classification');

1 Answer 1


There is a lot of ways to do this. If you want to preserve class ID, you need to mask the desired class. For example:

var crop_mask = cover.eq(13); // create a mask for crops
var crop = cover.mask(crop_mask); // mask it

As Rodrigo E. Principe and Nicholas Clinton suggest:

var crop = cover.updateMask(cover.eq(13)); // mask it
  • 2
    I think you should use upadteMask, which will replace mask for applying a mask to an Image. Saludos =) Commented Apr 23, 2018 at 23:56
  • Good suggestion. updateMask() is equivalent to mask(newMask.and(image.mask()) which is preferable because you're not unmasking any pixels. Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 18:09
  • @RodrigoE.Principe yes, you're right. Edited and thanks for the orientation
    – aldo_tapia
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 19:55
  • Thanks all of you. Is it possible to do this masking for several years. For example, I want to study the dynamics of cropland from 2005-2013 and I am trying to do that using: var filtered = crop.filterDate('2001-01-01', '2012-01-01'); Map.addLayer(filtered); This is giving me an error saying crop.filterDate is not a function. How it can be resolved? Commented Apr 27, 2018 at 9:47
  • And while using the filterDate command in the starting just after select('Land_Cover_Type_1'); command; it is not giving me any temporal analysis though it is not giving any error. Commented Apr 27, 2018 at 9:59

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