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Spatio-temporal association between plant functional diversity and flooding at Poyang Lake, PRC

Related Research Areas
Carbon Cycle & Ecosystems, Water & Energy Cycles
Project Description
Ecosystem diversity and productivity of wetland vegetation are critical determinants of biogeochemical cycling and waterbird habitat at Poyang Lake, the largest freshwater lake in People's Republic of China. This wetland represents a unique biodiversity hotspot and an important waterbird conservation site under Ramsar convention. The landscape undergoes dramatic seasonal and inter-annual dynamics due to monsoonal climate-driven flood cycle; however, ecological interactions between flooding and wetland vegetation dynamics as well as their effect on avian habitat are still poorly understood here and have not been addressed in previous studies. Urgent need to develop such an understanding is driven by various anthropogenic pressures including pending local hydrological dam projects, recent extreme droughts and extremely limited field access which has constrained comprehensive field-based assessments of this system. My research involves multi-scale analysis of remote sensing and field data to examine functional diversity of Poyang Lake wetland vegetation and its linkages with the seasonal and inter-annual flood dynamics. The outcomes are then used to investigate how seasonal dynamics of Poyang Lake plant functional types and non-vegetated features, including human land uses, are related to bird species richness and habitat characteristics across this landscape. My research approaches include combining object-based satellite image analysis and field spectroscopy with machine-learning algorithms and geospatial statistical tools.
Project Administrator(s):
Iryna Dronova

Members

Iryna Dronova