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Hyperspectral Remote Sensing of Forest Condition: Estimating Chlorophyll Content in Tolerant Hardwoods

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To develop practical and objective measures of forest condition, the Bioindicators of Forest Sustainability Project has used a physiological, remote sensing approach that emphasizes identifying early warning measures of stress effects in forests. While stress indicators exist at the leaf level (e.g., chlorophyll fluorescence, pigment levels), developing reliable indicators at the canopy level is a challenge. Hyperspectral sensors, such as the Compact Airborne Spectrographic Imager (CASI), may be useful in remotely detecting vegetation stress effects. In this study, an inverse modeling approach demonstrated that the CASI could be used to map chlorophyll content (root mean square errors ranging from 12.6 to 13.0 mg/cm2) following different silvicultural treatments in a tolerant hardwood (sugar maple [Acer saccharum M.]) forest. This capability could be readily applied to operationally assessing forest physiological strain and in classifying forest condition based on chlorophyll content. A change analysis study was also conducted to evaluate chlorophyll estimation across seasons for a range of sites. The implications of these findings and recommendations for a prototype system to monitor forest condition are presented. FOR. SCI. 49(3):381–391.
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Keywords: Acer saccharum; Bioindicators; CASI; MERIS; MODIS; change analysis; environmental management; forest; forest management; forest resources; forestry; forestry research; forestry science; natural resource management; natural resources; physiology; radiative transfer; silviculture; sugar maple

Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: 1: Ontario Forest Research Institute (OFRI), Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, 1235 Queen St. East, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada, P6A 2E5, Current Address Provincial Geomatics Service Centre, Ministry of Natural Resources, 300 Water St., Peteborough, Ontario, Canada, K9J 8M5, paul.sampson@mnr.gov.on.ca 2: Centre for Research in Earth and Space Science (CRESS), York University, 4700 Keele St., Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M3J 1P3, Current Address Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingenarias Agrarias, Universidad de Valladolid, Avda. de Madrid 44, Palencia, Spain, 34004, 3: Ontario Forest Research Institute (OFRI), Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, 1235 Queen St. East, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada, P6A 2E5, Current Address P&M Technologies, 66 Millwood St., Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada, P6A 6S7, mailto:mohammed@onlink.net 4: Dept. of Physics and Astronomy, York University and Centre for Research in Earth and Space Technology (CRESTech), 4700 Keele St., Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M3J 1P3, jrmiller@yorku.ca 5: Ontario Forest Research Institute (OFRI), Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, 1235 Queen St. East, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada, P6A 2E5,

Publication date: 2003-06-01

More about this publication?
  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2016 Impact Factor: 1.782 (Rank 17/64 in forestry)

    Average time from submission to first decision: 62.5 days*
    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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