Int. Arch. Photogramm. Remote Sens. Spatial Inf. Sci., XXXVIII-8/W20, 162-169, 2011
http://www.int-arch-photogramm-remote-sens-spatial-inf-sci.net/XXXVIII-8-W20/162/2011/
doi:10.5194/isprsarchives-XXXVIII-8-W20-162-2011
© Author(s) 2011. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
 
03 Sep 2012
ALPINE VEGETATION ECOTONE DYNAMICS IN GANGOTRI CATCHMENT USING REMOTE SENSING TECHNIQUES
C. P. Singh, S. Panigrahy, and J. S. Parihar EPSA, Space Applications Centre (ISRO), Ahmedabad, 380015, India
Keywords: Alpine vegetation ecotone; treeline, remote sensing, normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), Gangotri Abstract. Analysis of the satellite imagery reveals two different perspectives of the vegetation ecotone dynamics in Gangotri catchment. On one hand, there is evidence of upward shift in the alpine tree and vegetation ecotone over three decades. On the other hand, there has been densification happening at the past treeline. The time series fAPAR data of two decades from NOAA-AVHRR confirms the greening trend in the area. The density of trees in Chirbasa has gone up whereas in Bhojbasa there is no significant change in NDVI but the number of groves has increased. Near Gaumukh the vegetal activity has not shown any significant change. We found that the treeline extracted from satellite imagery has moved up about 327±80m and other vegetation line has moved up about 401±77m in three decades. The vertical rate of treeline shift is found to be 11m/yr with reference to 1976 treeline; however, this can be 5m/yr if past toposheet records (1924 – 45) are considered as reliable reference. However, the future IPCC scenario based bioclimatic fundamental niche modelling of the Betula utilis (a surrogate to alpine treeline) suggests that treeline could be moving upward with an average rate of 3m/yr. This study not only confirms that there is an upward shift of vegetation in the alpine zone of Himalayas, but also indicate that old vegetation ecotones have grown denser
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Citation: Singh, C. P., Panigrahy, S., and Parihar, J. S.: ALPINE VEGETATION ECOTONE DYNAMICS IN GANGOTRI CATCHMENT USING REMOTE SENSING TECHNIQUES, Int. Arch. Photogramm. Remote Sens. Spatial Inf. Sci., XXXVIII-8/W20, 162-169, doi:10.5194/isprsarchives-XXXVIII-8-W20-162-2011, 2011.

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