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Moleele, N., Ringrose, S., Arnberg, W., Lunden, B. and Vanderpost, C. 2001. Assessment of vegetation indexes useful for browse (forage) prediction in semi-arid rangelands. International Journal of Remote Sensing, 22(5): 741-756


Description:

Assessment of vegetation indexes useful for browse (forage) prediction in semi-arid rangelands.

Summary / Notes:

Considerable significance is placed on the mapping and monitoring of degraded areas in semi-arid regions of the world, including Botswana. Degraded areas include those suffering from bush encroachment, believed to result from heavy cattle grazing over a number of years. However, certain bush encroachment species have been found to be relatively nutrient-rich. The present work considers the extent to which a series of quantified layers through mainly bush encroachment canopies can be identified using conventional and newly derived vegetation indexes and transforms based on Thematic Mapper (TM) imagery. Field work involved the stratification of green biomass into firstly the herbaceous cover layer; secondly the 0.3-1.5 m browse layer; then the 1.5-2.5 m browse layer; and finally the >2.5 m browse layer. Biomass measurements from these layers were statistically associated with conventional vegetation indexes and transforms such as the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), brightness and greenness values, and relatively newly derived darkening indexes involving the mid-infrared bands. When green biomass and transformed pixel data were averaged per classified vegetation unit, weak negative correlations emerged between grass biomass and the transformed pixel data and no significant correlations developed with the woody biomass (browse) layers. However, when point data were used in the analyses, results showed that most indexes and the brightness transform were significantly correlated with the lower browse layer.

Year: 2001

Type: Journal Article

Origin: DRFN DLIB

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/01431160051060147


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