Next Article in Journal
Expansion of Commercial Sugarcane Cultivation among Smallholder Farmers in Uganda: Implications for Household Food Security
Previous Article in Journal
Assessing the Land and Vegetation Cover of Abandoned Fire Hazardous and Rewetted Peatlands: Comparing Different Multispectral Satellite Data
Article Menu
Issue 2 (June) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle

Forest Cover Changes and Trajectories in a Typical Middle Mountain Watershed of Western Nepal

School of Economics and Management, Beijing Forestry University, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 8 April 2018 / Revised: 22 May 2018 / Accepted: 4 June 2018 / Published: 6 June 2018
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [9442 KB, uploaded 6 June 2018]   |  

Abstract

There have been drastic changes in resource use practices and land-use patterns in the middle mountains of Nepal as a result of human transformation processes of the environment. This study aimed at assessing land-use and land-cover changes, especially those related to forest cover changes, in Phewa Lake watershed—a typical middle mountain watershed of western Nepal—using multi-temporal Landsat images from 1995, 2005 and 2017. Landsat images of each year were classified individually using object-based image classification into four land-use and land-cover types: agriculture and built-up, forest, waterbodies and other. Post-classification comparison was employed to quantify the extent and rate of changes, which was further extended to quantify the level of persistence, gains, losses, and swaps of forests. Furthermore, temporal trajectories of land-cover associated with forest cover changes were established, and their spatial pattern analyzed. The results show that, between 1995 and 2017, forest cover increased by 6.8% with a corresponding decrease in the extent of all other land-cover types. Dynamic transitions and internal trading among forest and agriculture and built-up category were observed, revealing more complex patterns than the commonly assumed linear and irreversible forest cover transformations in the mountains of Nepal. Our approach to assess major signals of forest cover transitions and change trajectories will help link patterns to the process of change including deforestation and forest regeneration. This would, in turn, form the basis for formulating practical conservation and management strategies for Phewa Lake watershed and other mountain watersheds of Nepal. View Full-Text
Keywords: forest cover change; swap change; change trajectory; Landsat; middle mountains; Phewa Lake watershed forest cover change; swap change; change trajectory; Landsat; middle mountains; Phewa Lake watershed
Figures

Figure 1

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).

Supplementary material

SciFeed

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Baral, P.; Wen, Y.; Urriola, N.N. Forest Cover Changes and Trajectories in a Typical Middle Mountain Watershed of Western Nepal. Land 2018, 7, 72.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Land EISSN 2073-445X Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top