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Remote Sens. 2016, 8(3), 200; doi:10.3390/rs8030200

Change Detection of Submerged Seagrass Biomass in Shallow Coastal Water

Geoscience and Digital Earth Centre (INSTeG), Research Institute for Sustainability and Environment (RISE), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), 81310 Johor Bahru, Malaysia
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Deepak R. Mishra, Richard W. Gould, Xiaofeng Li and Prasad S. Thenkabail
Received: 28 September 2015 / Revised: 4 February 2016 / Accepted: 17 February 2016 / Published: 1 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing in Coastal Environments)

Abstract

Satellite remote sensing is an advanced tool used to characterize seagrass biomass and monitor changes in clear to less-turbid waters by analyzing multi-temporal satellite images. Seagrass information was extracted from the multi-temporal satellite datasets following a two-step procedure: (i) retrieval of substrate-leaving radiances; and (ii) estimation of seagrass total aboveground biomass (STAGB). Firstly, the substrate leaving radiances is determined by compensating the water column correction of the pre-processed data because of the inherent errors associated with the geometric and radiometric fidelities including atmospheric perturbations. Secondly, the seagrass leaving radiances were correlated to the corresponding in situ STAGB to predict seagrass biomass. The relationship between STAGB and cover percentage was then established for seagrass meadows occurring in Merambong, Straits of Johor, Malaysia. By applying the above-mentioned approach on Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) acquired in 2009 and Operational Land Imager (OLI) data acquired in 2013, the resulting maps indicated that submerged STAGB in less clear water can be successfully quantified empirically from Landsat data, and can be utilized in STAGB change detection over time. Data validation showed a good agreement between in situ STAGB and Landsat TM (R2 = 0.977, p < 0.001) and OLI (R2 = 0.975, p < 0.001) derived water leaving radiances for the studied seagrass meadows. The STAGB was estimated as 803 ± 0.47 kg in 2009, while it was 752.3 ± 0.34 kg in 2013, suggesting a decrease of 50.7 kg within the four-year interval. This could be mainly due to land reclamation in the intertidal mudflat areas performed, with a view to increase port facilities and coastal landscape development. Statistics on dugong sightings also supports changes in STAGB. View Full-Text
Keywords: seagrass; biomass; changes detection; Landsat 8 OLI seagrass; biomass; changes detection; Landsat 8 OLI
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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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Misbari, S.; Hashim, M. Change Detection of Submerged Seagrass Biomass in Shallow Coastal Water. Remote Sens. 2016, 8, 200.

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