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Land, Volume 3, Issue 4 (December 2014) – 5 articles , Pages 1214-1292

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Communication
Patterns of Tree Distribution within Small Communities of the Sudanian Savanna-Sahel
Land 2014, 3(4), 1284-1292; https://doi.org/10.3390/land3041284 - 04 Dec 2014
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2483
Abstract
Crown diameter and tree density were measured in 52 communities in the Sudan-Sahel using satellite imagery to determine the relationships between rainfall and distance from community center to crown size diameter and tree density. As distance from the community center increased, tree density [...] Read more.
Crown diameter and tree density were measured in 52 communities in the Sudan-Sahel using satellite imagery to determine the relationships between rainfall and distance from community center to crown size diameter and tree density. As distance from the community center increased, tree density and crown diameter decreased. As rainfall increased, tree density decreased while crown diameter increased. Distance from the community center is a proxy for age since urbanization and our results indicate that older parts of communities show longer and more consistent tree management. The trends in patterns of tree distribution and size in communities are different from those in natural woodlands. Full article
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Article
Estimation of Aboveground Biomass Using Manual Stereo Viewing of Digital Aerial Photographs in Tropical Seasonal Forest
Land 2014, 3(4), 1270-1283; https://doi.org/10.3390/land3041270 - 14 Nov 2014
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3678
Abstract
The objectives of this study are to: (1) evaluate accuracy of tree height measurements of manual stereo viewing on a computer display using digital aerial photographs compared with airborne LiDAR height measurements; and (2) develop an empirical model to estimate stand-level aboveground biomass [...] Read more.
The objectives of this study are to: (1) evaluate accuracy of tree height measurements of manual stereo viewing on a computer display using digital aerial photographs compared with airborne LiDAR height measurements; and (2) develop an empirical model to estimate stand-level aboveground biomass with variables derived from manual stereo viewing on the computer display in a Cambodian tropical seasonal forest. We evaluate observation error of tree height measured from the manual stereo viewing, based on field measurements. RMSEs of tree height measurement with manual stereo viewing and LiDAR were 1.96 m and 1.72 m, respectively. Then, stand-level aboveground biomass is regressed against tree height indices derived from the manual stereo viewing. We determined the best model to estimate aboveground biomass in terms of the Akaike’s information criterion. This was a model of mean tree height of the tallest five trees in each plot (R2 = 0.78; RMSE = 58.18 Mg/ha). In conclusion, manual stereo viewing on the computer display can measure tree height accurately and is useful to estimate aboveground stand biomass. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Carbon Emission Reductions and Removals in Tropical Forests)
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Essay
Why Landscape Beauty Matters
Land 2014, 3(4), 1251-1269; https://doi.org/10.3390/land3041251 - 05 Nov 2014
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 5489
Abstract
This philosophical paper explores the aesthetic argument for landscape conservation. The main claim is that the experience of beautiful landscapes is an essential part of the good human life. Beautiful landscapes make us feel at home in the world. Their great and irreplaceable [...] Read more.
This philosophical paper explores the aesthetic argument for landscape conservation. The main claim is that the experience of beautiful landscapes is an essential part of the good human life. Beautiful landscapes make us feel at home in the world. Their great and irreplaceable value lies therein. To establish this claim, the concepts of landscape and “Stimmung” are clarified. It is shown how “Stimmung” (in the sense of mood) is infused into landscape (as atmosphere) and how we respond to it aesthetically. We respond by resonating or feeling at home. The paper ends by indicating how art can help us to better appreciate landscape beauty. This is done by way of an example from contemporary nature poetry, Michael Donhauser’s Variationen in Prosa, which begins with “Und was da war, es nahm uns an” (“And what was there accepted us”). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Landscape Perspectives on Environmental Conservation)
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Article
Vertical Distribution of Soil Organic Carbon Density in Relation to Land Use/Cover, Altitude and Slope Aspect in the Eastern Himalayas
Land 2014, 3(4), 1232-1250; https://doi.org/10.3390/land3041232 - 10 Oct 2014
Cited by 28 | Viewed by 4565
Abstract
In-depth understanding about the vertical distribution of soil organic carbon (SOC) density is crucial for carbon (C) accounting, C budgeting and designing appropriate C sequestration strategies. We examined the vertical distribution of SOC density under different land use/land cover (LULC) types, altitudinal zones [...] Read more.
In-depth understanding about the vertical distribution of soil organic carbon (SOC) density is crucial for carbon (C) accounting, C budgeting and designing appropriate C sequestration strategies. We examined the vertical distribution of SOC density under different land use/land cover (LULC) types, altitudinal zones and aspect directions in a montane ecosystem of Bhutan. Sampling sites were located using conditioned Latin hypercube sampling (cLHS) scheme. Soils were sampled based on genetic horizons. An equal-area spline function was fitted to interpolate the target values to predetermined depths. Linear mixed model was fitted followed by mean separation tests. The results show some significant effects of LULC, altitudinal zone and slope aspect on the vertical distribution of SOC density in the profiles. Based on the proportion of mean SOC density in the first 20 cm relative to the cumulative mean SOC density in the top meter, the SOC density under agricultural lands (34%) was more homogeneously distributed down the profiles than forests (39%), grasslands (59%) and shrublands (43%). Similarly, the SOC density under 3500–4000 m zone (35%) was more uniformly distributed compared to 3000–3500 m zone (43%) and 1769–2500 m and 2500–3000 m zones (41% each). Under different aspect directions, the north and east-facing slopes (38% each) had more uniform distribution of SOC density than south (40%) and west-facing slopes (49%). Full article
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Article
Development of a Historical Multi-Year Land Cover Classification Incorporating Wildfire Effects
Land 2014, 3(4), 1214-1231; https://doi.org/10.3390/land3041214 - 26 Sep 2014
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2612
Abstract
Land cover change impacts ecosystem function across the globe. The use of land cover data is vital in the detection of these changes over time; however, most available land cover products, such as the National Land Cover Dataset (NLCD), are produced relatively infrequently. [...] Read more.
Land cover change impacts ecosystem function across the globe. The use of land cover data is vital in the detection of these changes over time; however, most available land cover products, such as the National Land Cover Dataset (NLCD), are produced relatively infrequently. The most recent NLCD at the time of this research was produced in 2006 and does not adequately reflect the impact of land cover changes that have occurred since, including the occurrence of two large wildfires in 2008 in our study area. Therefore, there is a need for the classification of historical remotely sensed data, such as Landsat scenes, through replicable methods. While it is possible to collect field data coinciding with current or future Landsat acquisitions, it is impossible to retrospectively collect data for previous years; thus, fewer studies have focused on the classification of historical scenes. Using a single year of field reference and multi-year aerial photography data, we applied a simple decision tree classifier to accurately classify historic satellite data and produced maps of land cover to incorporate the effects of 2008 wildfires occurring between NLCD production dates. Overall accuracy ranged from 76 to 90 percent and was assessed using conventional error matrices. Full article
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