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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: APPLICATION OF OPTICS TO ESTIMATE RANGELAND PRODUCTION AND VIEW OBSTRUCTION READING (VOR) AT THE GRAND RIVER NATIONAL GRASSLAND

Location: Natural Resource Management Research

2011 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.


3. Progress Report
We succeeded in completing the first phase with the design and implementation of a simple, cost-effective data product that assesses relative differences in canopy structure at the 30 and 15 m pixel scales. In this initial phase, we 1) classified and randomized sample points for a 90,000 acre landscape using reflectance data from 2000 to 2009; 2) characterized sample points with respect to vegetation species, canopy height and biomass; 3) characterized sample points and the entire landscape with respect to elevation and vegetation reflectance by modeling digital elevation and broad-band image data. This approach to grassland landscape assessment can inform land managers of where conservation efforts may need to be applied at a grassland scale. Additional work, required in subsequent phases, will address application of hyperspectral data at a plot scale to assess vegetation height.


4. Accomplishments

Last Modified: 2/23/2016
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