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Characterizing tropical forest spatio-temporal heterogeneity using the Wide Dynamic Range Vegetation Index (WDRVI)

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Sustainable management of tropical forests has been identified as one of the main objectives for conservation and management of carbon stocks. Thus, managers need tools to assess whether current management practices are sustainable. Although sets of criteria and indicators have been developed to help managers, there is a need to assess these indicators from an operational perspective. We present an approach using geospatial analysis to assess a key ecoindicator: 'The change in diversity of habitats as a result of human interventions is maintained within critical limits as defined by natural variation and/or regional conservation objectives'. Applying variography to the Wide Dynamic Range Vegetation Index (WDRVI) data from Landsat 5 Thematic Mapper (TM) imagery and comparing the changes in spatial structure before and after selective logging, we identified which managed forest areas exhibited significant differences with respect to natural reference areas.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Center for Advanced Land Management Information Technologies (CALMIT), School of Natural Resources, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE 68588-0517, USA 2: Geographic Information Science Center of Excellence (GIScCE), South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD 57007-3510, USA

Publication date: 2008-12-01

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