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Insights of Forest Dynamics for the Regional Ecological Fragility Assessment

Ramachandra, TV and Bharath, S and Bharath, AH (2020) Insights of Forest Dynamics for the Regional Ecological Fragility Assessment. In: Journal of the Indian Society of Remote Sensing, 48 (8). pp. 1169-1189.

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Official URL: https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12524-020-01146-z


Forest ecosystems play a vital role in sustaining various life forms on the earth. These ecosystems support society through the provision of goods (timber, fuelwood, etc.) and an array of ecological services (carbon sequestration, nutrient cycling, etc.). However, unplanned developmental activities have been affecting the ecological integrity evident from the fragmentation of forests, barren hilltops, conversion of perennial streams to intermittent or seasonal streams, etc. During the past three decades, forests have undergone major transitions with the breaking of contiguous native forests into small parcels of land, restricting the movement of species thereby limiting the potential of species for dispersal and colonization. This paper analyzes the landscape dynamics and spatial patterns of forests fragmentation of Shimoga District, Central Western Ghats and prioritizes ecologically fragile or Ecologically Sensitive regions (ESR) at village levels based on bio-geo-climatic-social variables with the land use dynamics considering temporal remote sensing data. Results revealed that there was a net loss of 10 in forest cover from 43.83 (1973) to 34.02 (2018), primarily caused by the expansion of agriculture, horticulture, and forest plantations. Forest fragmentation has increased, evident from the decline of the interior forest to an extent of 11 from 26 (1973�2018). ESR prioritization at village level in the Shimoga district considering the ecological, geo-climatic and social variables indicate that 11 villages are ESR 1 (highest sensitivity), 30 are in ESR 2 (higher sensitivity), 36 are in ESR 3 (high sensitivity) and the remaining 23 are in ESR 4 or moderate sensitivity category. The analysis illustrates the importance of understanding spatiotemporal patterns of landscape structure for sustainable management of tropical forests.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Journal of the Indian Society of Remote Sensing
Publisher: Springer
Additional Information: The copyright of this article belongs to Springer
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Division of Interdisciplinary Sciences > Center for Infrastructure, Sustainable Transportation and Urban Planning (CiSTUP)
Division of Mechanical Sciences > Centre for Sustainable Technologies (formerly ASTRA)
Date Deposited: 07 Oct 2020 09:15
Last Modified: 07 Oct 2020 09:15
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/66493

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