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Title: Linking Land Use and Plant Functional Diversity Patterns in Sabah, Borneo, through Large-Scale Spatially Continuous Sentinel-2 Inference
Authors: Hauser, Leon T.
Timmermans, Joris
van Bodegom, Peter M.
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: MDPI
Source: LAND, 11 (4) , (Art N° 572)
Abstract: Global biodiversity losses erode the functioning of our vital ecosystems. Functional diversity is increasingly recognized as a critical link between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. Satellite earth observation was proposed to address the current absence of information on large-scale continuous patterns of plant functional diversity. This study demonstrates the inference and spatial mapping of functional diversity metrics through satellite remote sensing over a large key biodiversity region (Sabah, Malaysian Borneo, similar to 53,000 km(2)) and compares the derived estimates across a land-use gradient as an initial qualitative assessment to test the potential merits of the approach. Functional traits (leaf water content, chlorophyll-a and -b, and leaf area index) were estimated from Sentinel-2 spectral reflectance using a pre-trained neural network on radiative transfer modeling simulations. Multivariate functional diversity metrics were calculated, including functional richness, divergence, and evenness. Spatial patterns of functional diversity were related to land-use data distinguishing intact forest, logged forest, and oil palm plantations. Spatial patterns of satellite remotely sensed functional diversity are significantly related to differences in land use. Intact forests, as well as logged forests, featured consistently higher functional diversity compared to oil palm plantations. Differences were profound for functional divergence, whereas functional richness exhibited relatively large variances within land-use classes. By linking large-scale patterns of functional diversity as derived from satellite remote sensing to land-use information, this study indicated initial responsiveness to broad human disturbance gradients over large geographical and spatially contiguous extents. Despite uncertainties about the accuracy of the spatial patterns, this study provides a coherent early application of satellite-derived functional diversity toward further validation of its responsiveness across ecological gradients.
Notes: Hauser, LT (corresponding author), Leiden Univ, Inst Environm Sci, Dept Environm Biol, POB 9518, NL-2300 RA Leiden, Netherlands.;;;
Keywords: biodiversity; land use; functional diversity; oil palm; Borneo; logging;;Sentinel-2; plant diversity; satellite remote sensing; trait-based;ecology
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e-ISSN: 2073-445X
DOI: 10.3390/land11040572
ISI #: WOS:000785107300001
Rights: This article is an open-access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative CommonsAttribution (CC BY) license (
Category: A1
Type: Journal Contribution
Appears in Collections:Research publications

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