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Invasive Species (Tamarisk example)
The Tamarisk (saltcedar) Map shows the spatial distribution of Tamarisk over the area of interest. We use proprietary algorithm to take advantage of the spectral, spatial and temporal attributes of remotely sensed imagery.
Product Use Model
Tamarisk Map can be imported into a Handheld GPS for field scouting and to support Tamarisk eradication programs. It can also be imported into Variable Rate Applicator in support of a controlled chemical application eradication program.
Tamarisk is generating great concern since it is an invasive species that, since introduced from the Middle East as a landscaping plant 150 years ago, has infested large areas of the 260 million acres in the Western portion of the US. This weed sinks its taproot along rivers and springs in desert climates and consumes nearly twice the water of native plants like cottonwood. In addition, it accumulates mineral salts in its leaves that, as they accumulate on the ground, create a high soil salinity zone not tolerated by adjacent native vegetation. By altering the surrounding soil environment, the plant rapidly dominates native vegetation. If Tamarisk is not eradicated there is a great chance of critically diminishing the water flow in the Colorado River. The seriousness of this invasive species is getting Congressional attention and in the leadership of the large federal land management agencies.
A variety of crude, inexact and costly methods are currently in use for identifying, locating and mapping invasive weed species. The principal tools used for these purposes range from: “boots on the ground” visual surveys, aerial photography (with and without verification by visual inspection in the field); to the use of more sophisticated tools such as hand held GPS units to mark and measure the target species for incorporation into a geo-database. Again, all these methods are expensive, labor-intensive, and limited to accessible areas. There is an urgent need for mapping noxious species to assess infestations. These digital weed maps can be used for more efficient and cost effective planning, managing, monitoring and eradication programs.