Bridging theory and implementation – Testing an abstract classification system for practical mapping by field survey and 3D aerial photographic interpretation
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionNorsk Geografisk Tidsskrift. 2020, 73 (5), 301-317. 10.1080/00291951.2020.1717595
The abstract classiﬁcation system Nature in Norway (NiN) has detailed ecological deﬁnitions of a high number of ecosystem units, but its applicability in practical vegetation mapping is unknown because it was not designed with a speciﬁc mapping method in mind. To investigate this further, two methods for mapping – 3D aerial photographic interpretation of colour infrared photos and ﬁeld survey – were used to map comparable neighbouring sites of 1 km2 in Hvaler Municipality, south-eastern Norway. The classiﬁcation accuracy of each method was evaluated using a consensus classiﬁcation of 160 randomly distributed plots within the study sites. The results showed an overall classiﬁcation accuracy of 62.5% for 3D aerial photographic interpretation and 82.5% for ﬁeld survey. However, the accuracy varied for the ecosystem units mapped. The classiﬁcation accuracy of ecosystem units in acidic, dry and open terrain was similar for both methods, whereas classiﬁcation accuracy of calcareous units was highest using ﬁeld survey. The mapping progress using 3D aerial photographic interpretation was more than two times faster than that of ﬁeld survey. Based on the results, the authors recommend a method combining 3D aerial photographic interpretation and ﬁeld survey to achieve eﬀectively accurate mapping in practical applications of the NiN system.