I am trying to replicate the following manual workflow in the Python console of QGIS 3.4.7

Manual workflow:

1) Connect to WCS service.

Name: USGS National Map Elevation OGC-WCS

URL: https://elevation.nationalmap.gov/arcgis/services/3DEPElevation/ImageServer/WCSServer?request=GetCapabilities&service=WCS

2) Add the elevation data to the map canvas. I did this by dragging in the WCS layer "DEP3ElevationPrototype"

3) Zoomed to my area of interest

4) Right click the WCS layer > Export > Save As

5) Checked the box for Raw Data. Specified output file name and extent. Clicked OK.

The above workflow worked perfectly for me. However, I would like to have this same workflow in a python script. I couldn't find a processing tool for "Export > Save As", so I tried using GDAL Clip raster by mask layer

import processing
from qgis.core import *

### Raster layer from WCS
rlayername = 'elev'
uri = QgsDataSourceUri()
uri.setParam('url', 'https://elevation.nationalmap.gov/arcgis/services/3DEPElevation/ImageServer/WCSServer?request=GetCapabilities&service=WCS')
uri.setParam("identifier", rlayername)
rlayer = QgsRasterLayer(str(uri.encodedUri()), 'DEP3ElevationPrototype', 'wcs')

mask_filepath = 'N:\zTEMP\Ian\QGIS_Scripting\Black Diamon Study Area.shp'
mask_layer = QgsVectorLayer(mask_filepath, 'mask', 'ogr')

### Params for GDAL Clip Raster by Mask
parameters = {'INPUT': rlayer,
            'MASK': mask_layer,
            'NODATA': -9999,
            'ALPHA_BAND': False,
            'CROP_TO_CUTLINE': True,
            'KEEP_RESOLUTION': True,
            'OPTIONS': None,
            'DATA_TYPE': 0,
            'OUTPUT': 'N:\zTEMP\Ian\QGIS_Scripting\DEP3_Extract_Clip.tif'}

### Clip
print ("running algorithm")

I assume the problem is that Clip Raster by Mask cannot take a WCS raster, though I could be mistaken. Are there any ways to doing something like the manual workflow in the Python console?

Note that in this case I don't really care about the distinction clipping by extent vs clipping by mask. In the end I just want to get a TIF extract from a WCS raster.

  • Can't you use WCS subsetting to get the aoi? – nmtoken Apr 27 at 12:26
  • you have an error in the wcs itself, that ideintifier does not exist. See the capablities – Fran Raga Apr 29 at 8:23

this algorithm doesn't accept WCS so you have to look for an alternative.

Note: I correct the load of the WCS, since its code doesn't work for me

I propose this solution

import processing
from qgis.core import *
import urllib.parse

# Make WCS Uri
def makeWCSuri( url, layer ):  
    params = {  'dpiMode': 7 ,
                'identifier': layer,
                'url': url.split('?')[0]  } 

    uri = urllib.parse.unquote( urllib.parse.urlencode(params)  )
    return uri 

### Raster layer from WCS
rlayername = 'DEP3ElevationPrototype'
wcsUri = makeWCSuri('https://elevation.nationalmap.gov/arcgis/services/3DEPElevation/ImageServer/WCSServer', rlayername )
rlayer = QgsRasterLayer(wcsUri, 'DEP3ElevationPrototype', 'wcs')
if not rlayer.isValid():
  print ("Layer failed to load!")


mask_filepath = r'D:\temp\mask2.shp'
mask_layer = QgsVectorLayer(mask_filepath, 'mask', 'ogr')

# Save raster
renderer = rlayer.renderer()
provider = rlayer.dataProvider()
crs = rlayer.crs()

pipe = QgsRasterPipe()
projector = QgsRasterProjector()
projector.setCrs(provider.crs(), provider.crs())

if not pipe.set(provider.clone()):
    print("Cannot set pipe provider")

# Commented for extract raw data
# if not pipe.set(renderer.clone()):
    # print("Cannot set pipe renderer")

if not pipe.insert(2, projector):
    print("Cannot set pipe projector")

out_file = 'D:/temp/temporal.tif'
file_writer = QgsRasterFileWriter(out_file)

print ("Saving")

extent = mask_layer.extent()

opts = ["COMPRESS=LZW"]
error = file_writer.writeRaster(
    extent.width (),

if error == QgsRasterFileWriter.NoError:
    print ("Raster was saved successfully!")
    layer = QgsRasterLayer(out_file, "result")
    print ("Raster was not saved!")

I hope it helps

  • I've run your script and I was able to get a geotiff with the correct extent. However, the output raster appears to contain the RGB values rather than the raw elevation data (i.e. the raster consists only of pixels RGB = 17,17,17). I consulted the documentation for the QGsRasterFileWriter class and changed the Mode to 0 (raw). However, the output was the same as when Mode =1. Is there anything else I need to modify to get the raw values? – isevans77 Apr 29 at 15:07
  • updated the answer to get the raw information – Fran Raga Apr 29 at 16:52

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