Vegetation structure plays an important role in the partitioning of energy, the movement and fate of water, and the provision of habitat. How vegetation structure changes as a function of climate (phenology) is of interest for climate, carbon cycling, hydrologic, and biologic modeling as well as resource management. Multiple sources of remotely sensed data are being used to develop metrics that provide insight into the changing phenology of vegetation in Shenandoah National Park, Virginia. The primary goals of this research are to develop efficient and accurate means of remotely sensing vegetation structure and to understand the importance of these measurements for hydrologic and biologic science. Increasing the length of record from remote sensing systems as well as continued development of new sensor technology and missions present both opportunities and challenges for the study of vegetation structure.
Start and end of season changes in vegetation structure in the Shenandoah Valley from Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) and MODIS.