Canadian Forest Service Publications
Update of forest inventory data with lidar and high spatial resolution satellite imagery. 2008. Hilker, T.; Wulder, M.A.; Coops, N.C. Canadian Journal of Remote Sensing 34(1): 5-12.
Available from: Pacific Forestry Centre
Catalog ID: 28311
Most countries with significant forest resources have designed and implemented monitoring systems to inventory, at regular intervals, a range of forest stand attributes such as species composition, age, volume, biomass, and disturbance. These inventory systems are typically based upon the interpretation of air photos supplemented by ground measurements, with digital remotely sensed data often used to capture changes within inventory cycles. Light detection and ranging (lidar) and high spatial resolution digital satellite imagery (e.g., QuickBird) offer additional capacity and complementary data sources for inventory assessment, as demonstrated by this study over a 400 ha area on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada. A range of lidar survey parameters were applied to update an existing forest inventory. Results indicate a strong relationship between the small-footprint lidar-derived heights and stand height as derived from aerial photographic interpretation (API) (R = 0.79, p < 0.05). In addition, there was no statistical difference (p < 0.05) between stand height as predicted from a complete lidar coverage or when sampled as a single 400 m wide transect (R = 0.89, p < 0.001). These results demonstrate the utility of lidar data, as a full coverage or sample, in combination with high spatial resolution imagery, as useful data sources for capturing forest inventory stand height and cover information.