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Wetland-Change Data Derived from Landsat Imagery, Assateague Island to Metompkin Island, Maryland and Virginia, 1984 to 2015

September 6, 2017

This data release includes geospatial datasets that were created to analyze wetland changes along the Virginia and Maryland Atlantic coasts between 1984 and 2015 as part of the U.S. Geological Survey's (USGS) Barrier Island and Estuarine Wetland Physical Change Assessment. Wetland change was determined by assessing two metrics: wetland persistence and land-cover switching. Because seasonal water levels, beach width, and vegetation differences can affect change analyses, only images acquired during the spring (March, April, and May) were included in the wetland-change metrics (N=10).

USGS Data Series 968 presented data that were derived from Landsat 5 and Landsat 8 imagery from 1984 to 2014, including wetland and terrestrial habitat extents; open-ocean, back-barrier, and estuarine mainland shoreline positions; and sand-line positions along the estuarine mainland and barrier shorelines from Assateague Island, Maryland to Metompkin Island, Virginia. As part of the wetland-change analyses, 2 additional satellite images (17-April-1985 and 05-May-2015) were processed and classified using the methods described in Data Series 968 in order to provide a more complete time series. One additional image (26-April-1994) was reprocessed to correct a classification error that was identified by comparing wetland and total analysis extents among all images.