Quantitative Assessment of Emergent Spartina Alterniflora Biomass in Tidal Wetlands Using Remote Sensing

  • David S. Bartlett
  • Vytautas Klemas
Part of the Marine Science book series (MR, volume 11)


Modeling and other techniques applied to quantitative assessment of wetland energy and nutrient flux depend, in part, upon accurate data on vegetative species composition and primary production. Remote-sensing techniques have been applied to mapping of emergent wetland vegetation but not to quantitative measurement of emergent plant biomass.

A study conducted in the tidal wetlands of Delaware has shown that spectral canopy reflectance properties can be used to measure the emergent green biomass of Spartina alterniflora (Salt Marsh Cord Grass) periodically throughout the peak growing season (April through September) in Delaware. The study used in situ measurements of spectral reflectance in the four Landsat/MSS wavebands (4: 0.5–0.6 um; 5: 0.6–0.7 um; 6: 0.7–0.8 um; and 7: 0.8–1.1 um) for correlation with green biomass of S. alterniflora. Such measurements could be applied to calculations of net aboveground primary production for large areas of S. alterniflora marsh in which con-ventional harvest techniques may be prohibitively time consuming.


Remote Sensing Spectral Reflectance Canopy Height Green Biomass Marsh Vegetation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • David S. Bartlett
    • 1
  • Vytautas Klemas
    • 2
  1. 1.Marine Environments Branch, Marine and Applications Technology DivisionNASA-Langley Research CenterHamptonUSA
  2. 2.College of Marine StudiesUniversity of DelawareNewarkUSA

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