Chawla, Amit and Kumar, Amit and Lal, Brij and Singh, R D and Thukral, A K (2012) Ecological Characterization of High Altitude Himalayan Landscapes in the Upper Satluj River Watershed, Kinnaur, Himachal Pradesh, India. Journal of Indian Society of Remote Sensing, 40 (3). pp. 519-539.

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The Indian Remote Sensing (IRS) LISS III satellite imagery was used to classify three landscapes in the upper Satluj river watershed in Kinnaur region of western Himalaya viz. Nichar, Kalpa and Pooh. These landscapes representing different eco-climatic zones were subjected to landscape ecological analysis and various landscape composition, patch and edge characteristic metrics were computed to find the extent of fragmentation in the natural vegetation. The natural vegetation comprised of forests (10.24%), grasslands (31.04%) and scrublands (2.95%) as the landscape elements (LSE). These LSEs were further segregated into different LSE types based on the dominant species of plant communities in the landscapes. These LSE types were surveyed for species diversity in the three landscapes. The total landscape area (TLA) covered by natural vegetation in Nichar, Kalpa and Pooh landscapes was calculated to be 651.42, 529.02 and 1,673.72 km2 making the total area covered with natural vegetation in the district as 2,854.16 km2. The Pooh block, lying in the east of the district, though covered the largest area of the landscape, was poor in terms of landscape composition as compared to the Nichar block which was rich in landscape elements as suggested by the diversity measures. The extent of fragmentation was found to be highest in Nichar. The Nichar landscape was observed to be having higher mean values of species diversity than other blocks which is consistent with the trends observed with patches diversity. This was in contrast to the Pooh landscape where the patch diversity as well as the species diversity was the lowest. Thus, an ecological analysis utilizing landscape metrics and biodiversity field sampling of vegetation, was attempted for such heterogenous landscapes in high altitudes of Himalaya, which provided a baseline data for the management and conservation of these virgin mountainous areas

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Landscape ecology. Species diversity . Fragmentation . Kinnaur . Nichar . Kalpa . Pooh
Subjects: Remote Sensing and Mapping
Depositing User: Dr. Aparna Maitra Pati
Date Deposited: 31 Jan 2013 12:45
Last Modified: 31 Jan 2013 12:45

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