The invasion of exotic annual grasses is a widespread problem across the western United States. Of particular concern is cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum), which produces continuous mats of fine, highly flammable vegetation that can drive wildfires.
Multispectral (approx. 4-12 bands)
Many wildlife species reside in sensitive habitats that make detection and monitoring difficult. For waterfowl, measuring brood production can serve as an early indicator of habitat quality and provide important insight into understanding overall ecosystem drivers.
Waterfowl rely on continent-wide wetland networks supporting migratory pathways that connect important breeding and wintering grounds. Globally, 30 to 90% of these networks are threatened or have been heavily modified or destroyed by human development.
Waterfowl populations within California's Central Valley are unusual among most North American waterfowl populations in that the region contains both resident and migratory populations of several species. The region supports 60% of the waterfowl and waterbirds that stopover for at least part of the year along the Pacific Flyway, a major north-south migratory pathway.
The Delaware River Basin is an important water resource for Philadelphia and other cities in the region. It was chosen to demonstrate USGS’s model integration efforts to investigate the relationships among water use, land cover, and climate to assess and forecast the impact of changes in these parameters on the environment and water resources.
This project is generating new remote sensing methods for DOI use and across the globe. Recently published research introduced the Augmented Normalized Difference Water Index (ANDWI), which employs an expanded set of spectral bands—red, green, blue (RGB), near-infrared (NIR), and short-wave infrared (SWIR) 1&2—to maximize the contrast between water and non-water pixels.
California’s croplands cover roughly 3.8 million hectares (ha) with crop products valued at $33 billion USD according to the UDSA’s 2017 Census of Agriculture. Because of the value of these areas, monitoring surface water inundation in croplands is of interest for disaster preparedness and water management. Sources of inundation include both intentional irrigation and unintentional flooding.
The intersection of land use, water use, water availability, and climate change demands attention as resource constraints increasingly threaten human health and welfare. Long-term analyses of historical-to-current feedbacks among land use, water resources, and climate may support managers’ ability to anticipate potential feedbacks that could threaten human activities in the future.
The U.S. portion of the Lower Colorado River between Hoover and Morelos Dams has a critically important riparian ecosystem that is used by avian species as one of the only north-south flyways in this arid region. Landsat data from 2000 through 2020 were used to measure greenness and water use along five reaches of these riparian woodlands to evaluate trends in riparian ecosystem health.
Post-fire shifts in vegetation composition or successional trajectory will have broad impacts for carbon storage, hydrology, nutrient cycling, and wildlife habitat. However, information characterizing post-fire recovery patterns and their drivers is lacking over large spatial extents. Researchers tracked dual-season rates of post-fire recovery for more than 12,500 burned points across the western United States.