Habitat Monitoring in Alpine Regions by Means of QuickBird Data

Publication from Digital

Schmitt U., Nutz M., Schardt M.

Proceedings of the 9th International Symposium on High Mountain Remote Sensing Cartography, September 14-22, Graz , 2006


Diverse organisations dealing with the protection of the Alps have strong interest in comprehensive, comparable, up do date and repeatable information on the land use/land cover. National park management organisations need very high resolution data. The Hohe Tauern national park, for example, up to now owns the result of one visual aerial photo interpretation based on data from the year 1998. As time and cost effort for such an interpretation is very high, the park management is strongly interested in a cheaper, quicker, and possibly more reliable method which can be repeated more often.  The paper discusses the potential of high resolution satellite data (in this case QuickBird) for habitat monitoring. The main focus of the paper is the validation of habitat interpretability in the different geometric, spectral, radiometric or temporal resolutions of different sensor types. Additionally, other aspects of QuickBird data are discussed such as conditions of admission, possibility of semi-automatic interpretation, archiving, acquisition, and costs. The investigation is based on the very detailed HABITALP nomenclature which was used for the existing aerial photo interpretation. Furthermore, the potential for semi-automatic updating e.g. with respect to wind throw or avalanche damages will be investigated.

Keywords: Habitat monitoring, mapping, alpine regions, land use, land cover, very high resolution satellite data, QuickBird, Habitalp, interpretation key, HIK, nomenclature, Natura2000, Hohe Tauern national park, Austria