Journal article

Analysis, synthesis and modelling of high-resolution observations of salt-marsh eco-geomorphological patterns in the Venice lagoon

The present paper describes observations, analyses and models of salt-marsh channel network and vegetation patterns with the aim of contributing to the development of predictive models of ecological and morphological co-evolution. Existing and new observations are described, with particular emphasis on remote sensing and ancillary field surveys, which are shown to allow reliable, accurate and repeatable quantitative characterizations of landform and vegetation properties over the spatial scales of interest. The observed channel network morphological characters are then used as the basis and validation of models describing the emergence of channel network and vegetation spatial patterns. In particular, with reference to observations performed in the Venice Lagoon, the note describes: (i) new, 2-cm resolution, characterizations of channel network geometry obtained from "proximal sensing" photographic observations; (ii) the reliable quantitative maps of salt-marsh vegetation which may be retrieved from hyperspectral remote sensing data and field ancillary observations; (iii) a synthesis of recent and new analyses of the statistical properties of vegetation and landform spatial organization, that may be inferred from the maps so derived; (iv) recent and new conceptual and quantitative ecological and geomorphic models developed and validated by remote-sensing and field observations. A coherent observational and theoretical eco-morphodynamic framework is then proposed. © 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


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