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Open AccessArticle

Characterizing the Landscape Structure of Urban Wetlands Using Terrain and Landscape Indices

1
Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences, University of Missouri-Kansas City, Kansas City, MO 64110, USA
2
Department of History, Sociology, Geography & GIS, Tarleton State University, Stephenville, TX 76401, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 10 December 2019 / Revised: 9 January 2020 / Accepted: 11 January 2020 / Published: 19 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Land Change Modelling)
Several studies have shown human impacts on urban wetlands. These impacts are mostly studied at broad scales, which may generalize and aggregate important information needed for landscape quantification or terrain analysis. This situation can weakly or inappropriately address the structure of wetland landscapes, thus affecting the assessment of the quantities and qualities of terrestrial wetland habitats. To address these issues for urban wetland dynamics, this study proposes the use of landscape and terrain indices to characterize the landscape structure of urban wetlands at a fine scale in order to assess its usefulness in contributing to wildlife sustainability. To achieve this goal, secondary terrain attribute data are integrated with an object-based satellite image classification at the wetland and watershed level. The result reveals a general swell in wetland coverage at the watershed level. Further analysis shows the size and shape complexities, and edge irregularities are increased significantly at the patch level but slightly at the watershed level. Terrain analysis further reveals a potential increase in wetness and decrease in stream power vulnerability for most of the major wetlands under study. These results suggest that terrain and landscape indices are effective in characterizing the structure of urban wetlands that supports socio-ecological sustainability. View Full-Text
Keywords: wetland; watershed; landscape metrics; landscape structure; terrain analysis; terrestrial wetland habitat wetland; watershed; landscape metrics; landscape structure; terrain analysis; terrestrial wetland habitat
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MDPI and ACS Style

O. Festus, O.; Ji, W.; Zubair, O.A. Characterizing the Landscape Structure of Urban Wetlands Using Terrain and Landscape Indices. Land 2020, 9, 29.

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