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Cost effective methods to measure extent and condition of habitats: Earth Observation Phase 3 - WC1082

Description
Phase 1 of the Making Earth observation work for conservation series of research projects created the Crick Framework, which demonstrated ways that remote sensing technologies could be used to report on extent and condition of Annex 1 and Priority Habitats. Phase 2 refined the framework to produce a user’s guide and undertook practical trials of some technologies to see if they met expectations. This Phase 3 project aims to extend the work, building on existing knowledge and maps, to describe and map selected upland areas in the UK, looking in particular at the phenotypic manifestations of the communities of interest in relation to Earth Observation (EO). This project will trial and develop the object orientated rule base approach, to transfer the ecological manifestation of the habitats in upland areas to further develop the rule base approach. It will provide a business case for national roll out for further consideration by policy makers in collaboration with other works that are ongoing for Countryside Survey. A strategic mapping pilot of upland areas will be undertaken to assess the transferability of object orientated rule base mapping to an area where the habitats and context in which they are found are very different. It will make full use of available ancillary data. The work will include as assessment of the economic and practical application, and give critical evaluation of the methods and uncertainties. This work would test the adaptability of the technique to incorporate enough ecological variation to support a more strategic rollout at a national or UK wide scale. The project will involve a Knowledge Exchange component to ensure that potential users are aware of the potential and engaged in development of this. It is directly relevant to priority actions stated in Biodiversity 2020 to put robust, reliable and more co-ordinated arrangements in place, to monitor changes in the state of biodiversity and also the flow of benefits and services it provides us, to ensure that we can assess the outcomes of this strategy.
Objective
• Building on existing knowledge and maps, describe and map the biogeographical zones across the UK looking in particular at the phenotypic manifestations of the communities of interest in relation to EO.
• Trial and develop the object orientated rule base approach, to transfer the ecological manifestation of the habitats across regions on an eastern area of the UK.
• Define the rules for ecological manifestation of habitats in EO data for lowland / eastern conditions. Collect and make full sue of ancillary data to undertake a strategic mapping pilot to assess the transferability of object orientated rule base mapping to an area where the habitats and context in which they are found are very different.
• Provide a comparative review of the suitability for determining habitat condition as well as phenotypic variation.
• Provide a an assessment of the economic and practical application, and give critical evaluation of the methods and uncertainties.
Update the Crick Framework
• Evaluate and asses the adaptability of the technique to incorporate enough ecological variation to support a more strategic rollout at a national or UK wide scale.
• Give a brief account of how the methods could be used to report on geodiversity and ecosystem condition, function and delivery of services in relation to habitats within biogeographic zones.
• Communication and information exchange with others in the EO and conservation sector, and liaise with other initiates such as UK EOF, the National Ecosystem Assessment 2, the Ecosystem knowledge Exchange Network, and projects developing the next Countryside Survey.
Project Documents
• FRP - Final Report : WC1082 FINAL REPORT   (6983k)
• OTH - Other : Supporting Doc 3b National EO Service for habitat mapping summary document   (326k)
• OTH - Other : Supporting document 1: Policy document Identifying common requirements for MEOW outputs and approachs   (677k)
• OTH - Other : Supporting document 2: Knowledge Exchange   (563k)
• OTH - Other : Supporting document 3: Material for an Outline Business Case for a National EO Service for habitat mapping   (986k)
• OTH - Other : supporting document 3a Summary Outline Business Case for a National EO Service for habitat   (443k)
• OTH - Other : Supporting document 4: Ecological desk study of the pilot areas   (661k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2014

To: 2015

Cost: £246,372
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Environment Systems Ltd
Keywords
Biodiversity