Spatial Analysis of Land Surface - Vegetation Relationship in Mountainous Areas of the Tropics Using Srtm-3 Dem

  •  Joel Efiong    
  •  Opaminola Nicholas Digha    
  •  Obianuju Emmanuella Asouzu    


Digital elevation models (DEMs) have shown much potential for use in the extraction of land surface parameters and analysis of the relationship between land surface units and vegetation cover. However, there is lack of studies on the use of SRTM-3 DEM in vegetation studies of mountainous regions. This study is therefore an attempt to relate land surface parameters to vegetation cover in the Obudu mountain region using SRTM-3 DEM and Landsat data. Geomorphometric classification of the land surface was done using an unsupervised ISOCLUST algorithm while vegetation cover classification was done using the supervised approach based on the Maximum Likelihood algorithm. The resultant land surface units and vegetation cover maps were then related using grid-based statistic within the geographic information systems. The overall measure of difference between the two maps yielded a chi-square (d.f. = 24) = 1.9154, p > 0.05. This implies that there is no significant difference between the land surface units and the vegetation cover in the study area. This findings support the use of SRTM-3 for land surface and vegetation mapping where there is no higher quality data, or the cost of obtaining one is inhibitive; a situation that is faced by many developing economies like Nigeria. However, this results should be interpreted and used within the context of the uncertainty that is contained in the SRTM-3 DEM.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1916-9779
  • ISSN(Online): 1916-9787
  • Started: 2009
  • Frequency: semiannual

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