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Biological Monitoring and Remote Sensing of Invasive Plant Species

This website was developed to present the results of a remote sensing and biological monitoring project conducted at the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge. This study, conducted from 2010 through 2013, assembled a collaborative team of Eastern Michigan University wetland scientists, biologists, geographers, remote-sensing specialists, and their students to conduct ecosystem research experiments and remote sensing studies to identify and map the invasive reed cane species commonly referred to as Phragmites. Biological field research was conducted at sites selected in consultation with DRIWR managers. Remote sensing studies and mapping was conducted at all of the refuge management units. Research findings are being used for developing management policies regarding conservation, rehabilitation, and restoration and for identifying best practices for the control and eradication of Phragmites from the refuge ecosystem.

The project focused on several major tasks: 1) developing and validating remote sensing protocols for monitoring Phragmites distribution, 2) mapping habitats within the refuge using remote sensing and ground truth data, 3) assessing the effects of Phragmites invasion and Phragmites removal efforts on wetland ecosystem function, and 4) publish the results of the study using a GIS-based interactive map viewer platform to inform and aid management activities at the refuge.

This project, formally titled "Remote Sensing and Biological Monitoring of Invasive Plant Species and Their Impacts project at the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge" (CRSBM-DRIWR) was funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce, through a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Award, #NA09OAR4170172.