Predictions of tropical forest structure at the landscape level still present relatively high levels of uncertainty. In this study we explore the capabilities of high-resolution Satellite Pour l'Observation de la Terre (SPOT)-5 XS images to estimate basal area, tree volume and tree biomass of a tropical rainforest region in Chiapas, Mexico. SPOT-5 satellite images and forest inventory data from 87 sites were used to establish a multiple linear regression model. The 87 0.1-ha plots covered a wide range of forest structures, including mature forest, with values from 74.7 to 607.1 t ha-1. Spectral bands, image transformations and texture variables were explored as independent variables of a multiple linear regression model. The R2s of the final models were 0.58 for basal area, 0.70 for canopy height, 0.73 for bole volume, and 0.71 for biomass. A leave-one-out cross-validation produced a root mean square. error (RMSE) of 5.02 m2 ha-1 (relative RMSE of 22.8%) for basal area; 3.22 m (16.1%) for canopy height; 69.08 m3 ha-1 (30.7%) for timber volume, and 59.3 t ha-1 (21.2%) for biomass. In particular, the texture variable 'variance of near-infrared' turned out to be an excellent predictor for forest structure variables.
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Document Type: Research Article
Laboratorio de Analisis de Informacion Geografica, El Colegio de la Frontera Sur, San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas, Mexico
Departamento de Botanica, Instituto de Biologia, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Mexico, D.F., Mexico
Departamento de Agroecologia, El Colegio de la Frontera Sur, Villahermosa, Tabasco, Mexico
Publication date: 2010-03-01
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