Combining optical and acoustic data to enhance the detection of Caribbean forereef habitats

Bejarano, Sonia, Mumby, Peter J., Hedley, John D. and Sotheran, Ian (2010) Combining optical and acoustic data to enhance the detection of Caribbean forereef habitats. Remote Sensing of Environment, 114 11: 2768-2778. doi:10.1016/j.rse.2010.06.012

Author Bejarano, Sonia
Mumby, Peter J.
Hedley, John D.
Sotheran, Ian
Title Combining optical and acoustic data to enhance the detection of Caribbean forereef habitats
Journal name Remote Sensing of Environment   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0034-4257
Publication date 2010-11
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.rse.2010.06.012
Volume 114
Issue 11
Start page 2768
End page 2778
Total pages 11
Place of publication New York, NY, U.S.A.
Publisher Elsevier Inc.
Collection year 2011
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Maps of coral reef habitats are fundamental tools for reef management, and high map accuracy is desirable to support appropriate decisions, such as the stratification of marine reserves by habitat class. While satellite sensors have been used to map different reef communities, the accuracy of these maps tends to be low (overall accuracy < 50%) and optical airborne methods with high spectral resolution have, to date, been the most effective (if expensive) means of achieving higher accuracy. A potential means of compensating for the low spectral and radiometric resolution of optical satellite data, which is a major cause of its poor performance, is to combine satellite data with acoustic remote sensing. This study quantified the benefit of the synergy between optical satellite data (IKONOS) and acoustic (RoxAnn) sensors. The addition of acoustic data provided three new data axes for discriminating habitats: seabed roughness (E1), reef depth (z) and the depth correction of satellite spectral data to uniform depth. Seabed hardness (E2) was not an informative channel in our study. The use of z to conduct the water-column correction of the optical bands to uniform depth is a potential improvement over applying the depth-invariant index approach to optical data in the absence of ancillary information on depth. Habitat maps of the forereef of Glovers Atoll (Belize, Central America) were created using k-means unsupervised classification on eleven different treatment images constructed from various combinations of optical and acoustic data layers. The maximum benefit of data synergy was achieved by depth correcting the optical bands. The accuracy of maps based on the depth-invariant optical index was not enhanced when E1, E2 or z were added as separate layers but was enhanced when these three acoustic measures were added in concert. Data synergy can improve the accuracy of habitat maps and the availability of both data sets allows practitioners to take advantage of each techniques' additional strengths such as providing synoptic continuous imagery for education and general management planning (in the case of optical imagery) and maps of reef rugosity (in the case of acoustic data).

Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V.
Keyword IKONOS
Habitat mapping
Coral reefs
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Non HERDC
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 13 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Tue, 23 Nov 2010, 14:30:27 EST