I have smaller polygons -within bigger polygons-, and they supposed to by "holes" in the bigger ones. Based on the answers of this question I know how to identify them, and also how to get rid of the small polygons filling up the holes.

I also managed to make a model based on this. My problem is that it only works if the source feature classes are added to the table of contents and I put them in the model manually. Is there an other way to do this process as the "inside" part of a way bigger model?

Here is my model for easier visualization of my problem:

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  • The source and the source copy are identical
  • Select Layer By Location: I select the features that are comletely within the other features, which results the "inner rings" of the polygons.
  • Select Layer By Location(2): I simply switch the selection, so I can remove the unnecessary features, which happens in Delete Features.
  • Erase: I use the previous results as the erase feature with the copy of the original feature class as the input feature.

Now this works perfectly as I said, but only if the source and source copy are already added to the Table Of Contents, and only if I set them in the model manually every time.

Is there a way to do the same process within a model, with feature classes as the results of some other tools?

I am using ArcGIS Desktop 10.8.

1 Answer 1


Right-click source & source_copy and choose Model Parameter. This will enable other scripts/models to feed directly into this model.

The source will need to be a feature layer, not a feature class. You would need to run a feature class through the Make Feature Layer tool first.


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