While open canopy habitat such as pine barrens, sand plains and coastal dune ecosystems were ONCE prevalent across the Northeastern United States, today this habitat is RARE. Open canopy habitat should receive high conservation priority due to the extensive range of species it supports. To understand the progression of habitat loss, and to better direct restoration efforts, estimates of the historic extent of open canopy habitat is useful. Because historical records are spotty, this study mapped an approximation of pine barrens, sand plains and coastal dune ecosystems in New York State based on present day surficial geology. We used ArcMap, a geographic information system (GIS) application, to create a predictive habitat model using data from the United States Geologic Survey and the North American Land Change Monitoring System. Even though, today, New York open canopy habitat is recognized in only 34,158 hectares, our model indicates that there are 1.5 million hectares of deep, sandy soils that could support this type of ecosystem. Therefore, about 12% of the total area of New York State contains sandy soils identified by our model, yet open canopy habitat is only recognized in about 2.28% of the sandy soils identified by our model. The wide spread nature of these soils, and the small area of open canopy habitat currently located on these soils, suggests that there are large areas of land where future restoration efforts could focus on to increase the area of present-day open canopy habitat and protect the vast number of species this habitat hosts.