EGU21-13638, updated on 04 Mar 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu21-13638
EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Monitoring the Evolution of a Tidal Salt Marsh Restoration Site with an RTK-enabled UAV

Samantha Lewis1, Greg Baker2, Tony Bowron3, Jennie Graham3, and Danika van Proosdij4
Samantha Lewis et al.
  • 1Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research, Saint Mary's University, Halifax, Canada (samantha.lewis@smu.ca)
  • 2Maritime Provinces Spatial Analysis Research Center, Saint Mary's University, Halifax, Canada (greg.baker@smu.ca)
  • 3CB Wetlands and Environmental Specialists Inc., Halifax, Canada (tony.bowron@cbwes.com)
  • 4Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, Saint Mary’s University, Halifax, Canada (dvanproo@smu.ca)

Since 1900 AD, 64-71% of the world’s natural wetlands have been lost due to anthropogenic influences. Wetland restoration projects, such as managed realignment and tidal salt marsh restoration, act to combat these losses, but are also being used as a form of nature-based adaptation to the effects of climate change, including sea level rise. New advances in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) technology offer a unique opportunity to quantify the restoring landscape at resolutions and accuracies previously unachievable. This presentation will focus on the use of hyperspatial datasets collected with a Real-Time Kinematic (RTK) GNSS enabled UAV at a managed realignment site in the Bay of Fundy, Canada, to monitor and quantify the geomorphic evolution of the site, including the development of a semi-automated method for mapping embryonic creek networks. Analyzed datasets were collected seasonally over the course of 1 year following the reintroduction of tidal flow, and range in resolution from 2.0 - 3.5 cm. Preliminary results show significant spatial variation in channel evolution patterns, related to the presence and absence of antecedent landscape features. A greater understanding of restoration site evolution, and the effects of the antecedent landscape on that evolution, will allow for a more informed design and implementation of future restoration projects to encourage site resilience and sustainability in terms of climate change adaptation.

How to cite: Lewis, S., Baker, G., Bowron, T., Graham, J., and van Proosdij, D.: Monitoring the Evolution of a Tidal Salt Marsh Restoration Site with an RTK-enabled UAV, EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-13638, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu21-13638, 2021.

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