Evolution of equatorial vegetation communities mapped using Thematic Mapper images through a geographical information system (Guinea, Equatorial Africa)
The diverse spectral behaviour of vegetation permits the use of satellite imagery to map the extent and variety of different vegetation communities. The comparison with historical maps through a geographical information system facilitates the mapping of the temporal evolution of the coverage of different vegetation communities. Maps summarising the evolution of vegetation cover over forty years are produced, orientating future land use and planning. Progress or recession of estuarine vegetation communities such as mangroves growing on river banks under the influence of tides may be used as indicator of sea level changes.