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Mangroves at their limits: detection and area estimation of mangroves along the Sahara desert coast
Otero, V.; Quisthoudt, K.; Koedam, N.; Dahdouh-Guebas, F. (2016). Mangroves at their limits: detection and area estimation of mangroves along the Sahara desert coast. Remote Sens. 8(6): 13 pp. https://dx.doi.org/10.3390/rs8060512
In: Remote Sensing. MDPI: Basel. ISSN 2072-4292; e-ISSN 2072-4292, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Author keywords
    mangroves; arid ecosystems; latitudinal limits; remote sensing; areaestimation; Cap Timiris; Mauritania

Authors  Top 
  • Otero, V., more
  • Quisthoudt, K., more
  • Koedam, N., more
  • Dahdouh-Guebas, F., more

Abstract
    The northernmost and most arid mangrove ecosystem of West Africa is found in Mauritania, in the Parc National du Banc d'Arguin (PNBA). The existing global and regional maps of Mauritania's mangroves have little detail, and available estimates of the mangrove area differ among studies. We assessed the use of automated Remote Sensing classification techniques to calculate the extent and map the distribution of the mangrove patches located at Cap Timiris, PNBA, using QuickBird and GeoEye imagery. It was possible to detect the northernmost contiguous mangrove patches of West Africa with an accuracy of 87% +/- 2% using the Maximum Likelihood algorithm. The main source of error was the low spectral difference between mangroves and other types of terrestrial vegetation, which resulted in an erroneous classification between these two types of land cover. The most reliable estimate for the mangrove area obtained in this study was 19.48 +/- 5.54 ha in 2011. Moreover, we present a special validation procedure that enables a detailed and reliable validation of the land cover maps.

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