How to protect, live and let live in precious areas such as biosphere reserves?

Sep 2010 - Biodiversity - Conservation - Remote Sensing

Oscar Cardenas, an invited scientist in the SILVIS Lab, is working on the zoning of a biosphere reserve in Mexico where he studying jaguar habitat in order to assure the species presence for the future. While doing so, he’s faced with social issues that are intrinsically and deeply related with natural resources protection and preservation and raise some new research questions.

Institutional change and logging in post-Soviet Russia

Aug 2010 - Conservation - Land Use - Remote Sensing

After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, privatization of timber firms was expected to provide an efficient mechanism for the management of forest resources in Russia. Kelly Wendland analyzes how economic factors have impacted harvesting since transition and explores whether weak governance effected investment decisions in European Russia.

Fire Increase in the Grasslands of Kalmykia

Aug 2010 - Fire - Remote Sensing

Grassland fires in Kalmykia, Russia increased dramatically following the collapse of socialism. Socio-economic changes reduced livestock numbers and therefore grazing pressure on grasslands. Maxim Dubinin analyzed over 20 years of satellite images to quantify this change.

Texture, phenology and bird species

Aug 2010 - Conservation - Remote Sensing

Vegetation structure is an important habitat attribute characterizing bird habitat. Measuring vegetation structure in the field is time consuming and thus inefficient across large scales. Eric Wood is exploring whether use of a metric called image texture derived from satellite and aerial images can potentially streamline the process of assessing vegetation structure and facilitate prediction of bird distribution across large areas.

Post-socialist forest-cover change in Russia

Jul 2010 - Remote Sensing

Social and economic changes occurring in post-socialist Russia have led to shifting patterns of selective logging in the understudied temperate forests of Russia, potentially leading to poor estimates of carbon stocks across this vast region. Matthias Baumann hopes to describe these patterns of forest cover change and refine methods for remotely sensing selective logging and determining it’s impacts on carbon stock estimates for these forests.

Human-Natural Relationships in Yunnan, China

Mar 2010 - Land Use - Remote Sensing

Last fall, Jodi Brandt started a new, exciting project studying intertwined networks of human-natural relationships in NW Yunnan, China. Jodi will primarily use high-tech remote sensing and geographic information system approaches to uncover some of the mysteries of her study region.