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Remote Sens. 2015, 7(11), 14276-14291; doi:10.3390/rs71114276

Monitoring the Impacts of Severe Drought on Southern California Chaparral Species using Hyperspectral and Thermal Infrared Imagery

1
Department of Geography, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, 84112 UT, USA
2
Department of Geography, University of California Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, 93106 CA, USA
3
Department of Land, Air and Water Resources, University of California Davis, Davis, 95616 CA, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Alfredo R. Huete and Prasad S. Thenkabail
Received: 31 August 2015 / Revised: 2 October 2015 / Accepted: 16 October 2015 / Published: 28 October 2015
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1281 KB, uploaded 28 October 2015]   |  

Abstract

Airborne hyperspectral and thermal infrared imagery acquired in 2013 and 2014, the second and third years of a severe drought in California, were used to assess drought impacts on dominant plant species. A relative green vegetation fraction (RGVF) calculated from 2013–2014 Airborne Visible Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) data using linear spectral unmixing revealed seasonal and multi-year changes relative to a pre-drought 2011 reference AVIRIS image. Deeply rooted tree species and tree species found in mesic areas showed the least change in RGVF. Coastal sage scrub species demonstrated the highest seasonal variability, as well as a longer-term decline in RGVF. Ceanothus species were apparently least well-adapted to long-term drought among chaparral species, showing persistent declines in RGVF over 2013 and 2014. Declining RGVF was associated with higher land surface temperature retrieved from MODIS-ASTER Airborne Simulator (MASTER) data. Combined collection of hyperspectral and thermal infrared imagery may offer new opportunities for mapping and monitoring drought impacts on ecosystems. View Full-Text
Keywords: drought; hyperspectral remote sensing; thermal infrared remote sensing; vegetation; spectral mixture analysis; AVIRIS; MASTER; HyspIRI drought; hyperspectral remote sensing; thermal infrared remote sensing; vegetation; spectral mixture analysis; AVIRIS; MASTER; HyspIRI
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Coates, A.R.; Dennison, P.E.; Roberts, D.A.; Roth, K.L. Monitoring the Impacts of Severe Drought on Southern California Chaparral Species using Hyperspectral and Thermal Infrared Imagery. Remote Sens. 2015, 7, 14276-14291.

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