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Journal of Applied Remote Sensing

Delineating native and invasive plant functional groups in shrub-steppe vegetation using bidirectional reflectance
Author(s): Javier A. Naupari; Lee A. Vierling; Jan U. H. Eitel
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Paper Abstract

Delineating invasive and native plant types using remote sensing is important for managing rangelands. Remote characterization of rangeland vegetation often utilizes only the nadir view, which can be complicated by background soil reflectance. We therefore collected bidirectional radiometric measurements on a shrub-steppe vegetated landscape throughout the mid- to late-growing season to: (1) quantify the BRFs of four rangeland vegetation functional groups (native shrub, native grasses, invasive annual grasses, and forbs), and (2) examine ways in which bidirectional reflectance values may help delineate native and invasive vegetation types. We found that the invasive grass medusahead rye (Taeniatherum caput-medusae [L.] Nevski) could be discriminated from other vegetation types at nadir and across four forward-viewing zenith angles because this species exhibited structural changes when leaf orientation changed from erectophile to planophile during and after the filling of seedheads. We also confirmed that native shrubs exhibited the highest anisotropy in all wavebands, as the relatively complex structure of the shrub canopy and concomitant shadowing greatly affected values of normalized difference vegetation index across all view angles. In order to delineate rangeland vegetation types at coarser scales, further study is needed to quantify the spectral angular signatures of these plant groups using satellite-based images.

Paper Details

Date Published: 14 May 2013
PDF: 19 pages
J. Appl. Remote Sens. 7(1) 073563 doi: 10.1117/1.JRS.7.073563
Published in: Journal of Applied Remote Sensing Volume 7, Issue 1
Show Author Affiliations
Javier A. Naupari, Univ. of Idaho (United States)
Lee A. Vierling, Univ. of Idaho (United States)
Jan U. H. Eitel, Univ. of Idaho (United States)

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