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  • biomonitoring  (11)
  • remote sensing  (10)
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  • 1
    ISSN: 1573-2959
    Keywords: biomonitoring ; heavy metals ; Italy ; lichens ; waste incineration
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Notes: Abstract The epiphytic lichen Parmelia caperata was usedas biomonitor in the area of a municipal solid wasteincinerator (Poggibonsi, central Italy) to investigatethe levels and the spatial distribution of the heavymetals Al, Cd, Cr, Cu, Fe, Hg, Pb and Zn. Levels ofAl, Cu and Hg were similar to those in unpollutedareas, whereas high values were found for Cr, Zn andespecially Cd. The distribution pattern of the lastthree metals and the exponential relationship of theirconcentrations with distance from the incinerator,showed that the disposal plant is a local source ofatmospheric pollution due to Cd, Cr and Zn. For thesemetals, long-term hazard should be seriously taken into account.
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1573-2959
    Keywords: biomonitoring ; meteorology ; ozone doses ; tobacco plants
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Notes: Abstract Evaluation of visual symptoms of ozone damage was conducted in the network of bioindicator rural stations of Catalonia (NE Spain) every 14 days from May to October. Damage rates of ozone (and consequently, ozone biomonitoring capacity of bioindicators) were found to vary highly in time and space depending on the local environmental and meteorological conditions. Lower ozone damage to foliage was produced when meteorological conditions favour stomata resistance. Modulatory effects of meteorological conditions need to be considered in biomonitoring and when modeling plant ozone doses and damage.
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1573-2959
    Keywords: Soil and water retention ; bare patch size ; percent bare soil ; grass ; shrub ; remote sensing
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Notes: Abstract The most important function of watersheds in the western U.S. is the capacity to retain soil and water, thereby providing stability in hydrologic head and minimizing stream sediment loads. Long-term soil and water retention varies directly with vegetation cover. Data on ground cover and plant species composition were collected from 129 sites in the Rio Grande drainage of south-central New Mexico. This area was previously assessed by classification of Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometry (AVHRR) imagery. The classification of irreversibly degraded sites failed to identify most of the severely degraded sites based on size of bare patches and 35% of the sites classified as degraded were healthy based on mean bare patch size and vegetation cover. Previous research showed that an index of unvegetated soil (bare patch size and percent of ground without vegetative cover) was the most robust indicator of the soil and water retention function. Although the regression of mean bare patch size on percent bare ground was significant (p 〈 0.001), percent bare ground accounted for only 11% of the variability in bare patch size. Therefore bare patch size cannot be estimated from data on percent bare ground derived from remote sensing. At sites with less than 25% grass cover, and on sites with more than 15% shrub cover, there were significant relationships between percent bare soil and mean bare patch size (p 〈 0.05). Several other indicators of ecosystem health were related to mean bare patch size: perennial plant species richness (r = 0.6, p 〈 0.0001), percent cover of increaser species (r = 0.5, p 〈 0.0001) and percent cover of forage useable by livestock (r = 0.62, p 〈 0.0001). There was no relationship between bare patch size and cover of species that are toxic to livestock. In order to assess the ability of western rangeland watersheds to retain soil and water using remote sensing, it will be necessary to detect and estimate sizes of bare patches ranging between at least 0.5 m in diameter to several meters in diameter.
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1573-2959
    Keywords: aerial videography ; ecological indicators ; landscape ecology ; monitoring techniques ; remote sensing ; tropical savannas
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Notes: Abstract If the goal for managing rangelands is to achieve a balance between production and conservation, then monitoring is essential to detect change and apply corrective action. In some range-land areas of northern Australia, monitoring has detected a tilt in the production-conservation balance towards excessive production. How big is this imbalance? Can it shift back? Robust monitoring is needed to answer these questions. The aim is to know what to monitor, and where. For example, to detect changes caused by livestock on rangeland forage production and soil erosion, indicators linking grazing disturbances to landscape function are needed, that is, indicators that signal how well landscapes are capturing, concentrating, and utilizing scarce water, nutrient, and organic resources. Studies in Australia and the USA document that simple vegetation and soil patch attributes can be measured as indicators of the 'state of health' of landscape function. For example, field and remote sensing-based grazing studies in Australia document that landscapes with a high cover of perennial plant patches function effectively to capture runoff water and nutrients in sediments, whereas landscapes with a low cover of these patches do not — they are dysfunctional — as indicated by large patches of bare soil. Aerial videography is proving to be a robust technique for measuring indicators of landscape function such as small patches of vegetation and the extent of bare soil. These indicators typically have a sigmoidal response to grazing impacts. We illustrate that if these indicators are measured on monitoring sites established near the sigmoidal 'point of inflection’ then small changes in these indicators can be detected.
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  • 5
    ISSN: 1573-2959
    Keywords: landscape characterization ; remote sensing ; change detection ; regional vulnerability ; accuracy assessment ; San Pedro River
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Notes: Abstract Vegetation change in the American West has been a subject of concern throughout the twentieth century. Although many of the changes have been recorded qualitatively through the use of comparative photography and historical reports, little quantitative information has been available on the regional or watershed scale. It is currently possible to measure change over large areas and determine trends in ecological and hydrological condition using advanced space-based technologies. Specifically, this process is being tested in a community-based watershed in southeast Arizona and northeast Sonora, Mexico using a system of landscape pattern measurements derived from satellite remote sensing, spatial statistics, process modeling, and geographic information systems technology. These technologies provide the basis for developing landscape composition and pattern indicators as sensitive measures of large-scale environmental change and thus may provide an effective and economical method for evaluating watershed condition related to disturbance from human and natural stresses. The project utilizes the database from the North American Landscape Characterization (NALC) project which incorporates triplicate Landsat Multi-Spectral Scanner (MSS) imagery from the early 1970s, mid 1980s, and the 1990s. Landscape composition and pattern metrics have been generated from digital land cover maps derived from the NALC images and compared across a nearly 20-year period. Results about changes in land cover for the study period indicate that extensive, highly connected grassland and desertscrub areas are the most vulnerable ecosystems to fragmentation and actual loss due to encroachment of xerophytic mesquite woodland. In the study period, grasslands and desertscrub not only decreased in extent but also became more fragmented. That is, the number of grassland and desertscrub patches increased and their average patch sizes decreased. In stark contrast, the mesquite woodland patches increased in size, number, and connectivity. These changes have important impact for the hydrology of the region, since the energy and water balance characteristics for these cover types are significantly different. The process demonstrates a simple procedure to document changes and determine ecosystem vulnerabilities through the use of change detection and indicator development, especially in regard to traditional degradation processes that have occurred throughout the western rangelands involving changes of vegetative cover and acceleration of water and wind erosion.
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  • 6
    ISSN: 1573-2959
    Keywords: biodiversity ; butterflies ; birds ; climate change ; montane vegetation ; remote sensing ; Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Notes: Abstract We used a time series of satellite multispectral imagery for mapping and monitoring six classes of montane meadows arrayed along a moisture gradient (from hydric to mesic to xeric). We hypothesized that mesic meadows would support the highest species diversity of plants, birds, and butterflies because they are more moderate environments. We also hypothesized that mesic meadows would exhibit the greatest seasonal and interannual variability in spectral response across years. Field sampling in each of the meadow types was conducted for plants, birds, and butterflies in 1997 and 1998. Mesic meadows supported the highest plant species diversity, but there was no significant difference in bird or butterfly species diversity among meadow types. These data show that it may be easier to detect significant differences in more species rich taxa (e.g., plants) than taxa that are represented by fewer species (e.g., butterflies and birds). Mesic meadows also showed the greatest seasonal and interannual variability in spectral response. Given the rich biodiversity of mesic montane meadows and their sensitivity to variations in temperature and moisture, they may be important to monitor in the context of environmental change
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  • 7
    ISSN: 1573-2959
    Keywords: age ; biomonitoring ; heavy metals ; seabirds
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Notes: Abstract The effects of age on cadmium concentrations was investigated in Cory's shearwater, Calonectris diomedea, Lesser black-backed gull, Larus fuscus, and great skuas, Catharacta skua. There was no evidence for the continued accumulation of cadmium with increasing adult age. Adult shearwaters did have higher concentrations of cadmium compared to young fledglings, but there was no significant difference between cadmium concentrations in adult and sub-adult gulls. In addition, the sample of great skuas were of known age (3–22 yrs old) and showed no evidence of increasing cadmium concentrations with adult age in liver or kidney. However, it is possible that age accumulation of cadmium in great skuas was masked by individual dietary preferences overriding the effects of increasing age. It is often assumed that cadmium concentrations continue to accumulate with increasing adult age, but seabirds may have evolved some as yet unknown mechanism for excretion or more rapid turnover of cadmium than previously thought. The implications of this for the use of seabirds as biomonitors is discussed.
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  • 8
    ISSN: 1573-2959
    Keywords: benthic invertebrates ; biodiversity ; biometrics ; biomonitoring ; macrobenthos ; St. Johns River Florida ; submerged aquatic vegetation
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Notes: Abstract The macrobenthos in the oligohaline 132 km reach of the Lower St. Johns River, Florida, is an unusual blend of freshwater and marine organisms within the annelid, mollusk, aquatic insect, and crustacean groups. During 1993–1994, the community composition was freshwater-oriented in the 47 km (seg I) and estuarine-dominated in the lower 85 km (seg II). Of the total 146 taxa collected, 89% were euryecious 'eutrophic' and 'pollution-tolerant' organisms. Densities ranged between 5000 and 20 000 individuals/m2 ann av and maximum densities (85 000 individuals/m2) occurred in the muck substrate at the confluence of major tributaries and embayments. Throughout the lake-like seg II, benthic hypoxia existed during much of summer through fall. Biotic index values for grab, artificial substrate, and sled trawl samples reflected greatest stresses to the macrobenthos then. Both low taxonomic diversity and densities of organisms at the most downriver stations nearest the port of Jacksonville indicated that toxic substances also adversely affected the macrobenthos. Maintenance of the narrow band of littoral submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) and adjacent shoreline riparian vegetation is important to sustain macrobenthic communities and other kinds of aquatic life in the river.
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  • 9
    ISSN: 1573-2959
    Keywords: biomonitoring ; damage inventory ; forest assessment ; forest decline
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Notes: Abstract Between 1988 and 1993 six surveys on the condition of forests in Navarra (North Spain) were carried out. The results, relating to 408 trees in 17 sampling points, showed that the overall percentage of damaged trees increased from 2.86% in 1988 to 18.6% in 1993, which indicates a general large-scale deterioration of forest condition. Among the most common groups of trees, the most severely affected species were Quercus faginea, Quercus robur and Pinus sylvestris. Furthermore, it was observed that defoliation and discoloration processes did not occur randomly between stand trees, but the trees that were damaged one year (1992) were more predisposed to suffer damage in the next year (1993).
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  • 10
    ISSN: 1573-2959
    Keywords: desertification assessment ; GIS ; integrated models ; land degradation ; remote sensing
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Notes: Abstract Desertification has been defined as land degradation in arid, semi-arid and dry sub-humid areas resulting from various factors, including climatic variations and human activities (United Nations, 1992). A technique for identifying and assessing areas at risk fordesertification in the arid, semi-arid, and subhumid regionsof the United States was developed by the Desert Research Institute and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), using selected environmental indicators integrated into a Geographic Information System (GIS). Five indicators were selected: potential erosion, grazing pressure, climatic stress (expressed as a function of changesin the Palmer Drought Severity Index [PDSI]), change invegetation greenness (derived from the Normalized DifferenceVegetation Index [NDVI]), and weedy invasives as a percentof total plant cover. The data were integrated over aregional geographic setting using a GIS, which facilitateddata display, development and exploration of data relationships, including manipulation and simulation testing. By combining all five data layers, landscapes having a varying risk for land degradation were identified, providing a tool which could be used to improve landmanagement efficiency.
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