APPLICATION OF OPTICS TO ESTIMATE RANGELAND PRODUCTION AND VIEW OBSTRUCTION READING (VOR) AT THE GRAND RIVER NATIONAL GRASSLAND
Northern Great Plains Research Laboratory
2013 Annual Report
1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
To use remote sensing-based data to estimate VOR at the Grand River National Grassland.
1b.Approach (from AD-416):
ARS will approach the problem of determining rangeland biomass under variable climatic conditions using hyperspectral aerial and multispectral satellite-based data collected both at the end of June and the beginning of September.
The second phase of this project was successfully completed with the collection and analysis of field data and hyperspectral imagery for modeling grassland canopy structure within the Grand River National Grassland, South Dakota. Specifically, this phase involved the measurement and analysis of mixed-grass prairie structural attributes and spectral vegetation indices at 72 sampling locations across a 90,000 acre landscape. Sampling locations were characterized by vegetation species during peak biomass and standing crop mass and canopy height at senescence. Field, landscape, and imagery data were integrated to develop models for predicting vegetation characteristics at the end of the growing season. These models have the potential to inform land managers where conservation efforts may be required across complex grassland landscapes.