Science Inventory

Mapping isolated wetlands in a Karst landscape: GIS and remote sensing methods

Citation:

Reif, M., R. C. Frohn, C. R. LANE, AND B. C. AUTREY. Mapping isolated wetlands in a Karst landscape: GIS and remote sensing methods. GISCIENCE AND REMOTE SENSING. V H Winston & Sons Incorporated, Columbia, MD, 46(2):187-211, (2009).

Impact/Purpose:

In this study, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and remote sensing mapping techniques were developed to identify the locations of isolated wetlands in Alachua County, Florida, a 2,510 km2 area in north-central Florida with diverse geology and numerous isolated wetlands. The results of the stand-alone and combined GIS and remote sensing analyses were assessed by comparing the mapped isolated wetlands to an accuracy dataset, using an "intersection" approach. The combined GIS and remote sensing method performed the best of all the methods developed, with producer accuracies ranging from 93 - 100% and user accuracies ranging from 86 - 95%, depending on wetland size. In addition, both the stand-alone remote sensing method and the combined GIS/remote sensing method were especially sucessful at identifying smaller isolated wetlands, down to 0.5 acre in size, which can be difficult and time consuming to map using aerial photointerpretation. The methods developed in this study were successful at mapping isolated wetlands and could be used in other regions to address important questions surrounding national estimates and areal distribution of isolated wetlands.

Description:

Isolated wetlands occur in many areas of the United States, and although they are relatively common, they are a resource not yet thoroughly understood by the scientific community. Isolated wetlands have received increased attention recently, due to the 2001 Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County vs. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (SWANCC) Supreme Court ruling, [531 U.S. 159 (2001)], which reduced federal protection of isolated wetlands under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act. In the aftermath of this decision, scientists and researchers are attempting to gain a more thorough understanding of these wetland resources, their characteristics and value. Having accurate information on the ex tent of isolated wetlands is a first step toward understanding and characterizing these systems and is an integral part of identifying their function in the landscape.

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Product Published Date: 04/01/2009
Record Last Revised: 10/30/2009
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 195329

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL EXPOSURE RESEARCH LABORATORY

ECOLOGICAL EXPOSURE RESEARCH DIVISION

ECOSYSTEMS RESEARCH BRANCH