Discrimination of coral reefs, seagrass meadows, and sand bottom types from space: a Dominican Republic case study

Joseph Luczkovich, Thomas Wagner, Jeffrey Michalek, Richard W Stoffle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

58 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In order to monitor changes caused by local and global human actions to a coral reef ecosystem, we ″sea-truthed″ a natural color Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) image prepared for a coastal region of the northwestern Dominican Republic and recorded average water depth, precise geographical positions; and bottom types (seagrass, 15 sites; coral reef, ten sites; and sand, six sites). There were no significant differences in depth for the bottom type groups. The depths ranged from 0 to 16.1 m (0 to 52.7 ft). Sand > seagrass > coral in mean Landsat digital counts (proportional to radiance) for the three Landsat TM visible bands (TM 1, TM 2, TM 3); sand bottom sites had significantly greater digital counts than seagrass and coral sites in TM 1 only. Mean digital counts of seagrass and coral reefs sites did not differ significantly in any band. A multivariate analysis of variance using all three bands gave similar results. A ratio of the green/blue bands (TM 2/TM 1) showed there was a spectral shift associated with increasing depth but not bottom type. Due to small-scale patchiness( < 30 m by 30 m), seagrass and coral areas were difficult to distinguish, but sandy areas can be distinguished using Landsat TM imagery and our methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)385-389
Number of pages5
JournalPhotogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing
Volume59
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1993
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

seagrass meadow
Reefs
seagrass
coral reef
Sand
sand
Landsat thematic mapper
coral
Analysis of variance (ANOVA)
Ecosystems
Color
patchiness
multivariate analysis
variance analysis
radiance
Landsat
water depth
imagery
Water
ecosystem

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Computers in Earth Sciences
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)
  • Environmental Science(all)

Cite this

Discrimination of coral reefs, seagrass meadows, and sand bottom types from space : a Dominican Republic case study. / Luczkovich, Joseph; Wagner, Thomas; Michalek, Jeffrey; Stoffle, Richard W.

In: Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing, Vol. 59, No. 3, 03.1993, p. 385-389.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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