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Barrier island habitat map and vegetation survey—Dauphin Island, Alabama, 2015

August 4, 2017

Barrier islands are dynamic environments due to their position at the land-sea interface. Storms, waves, tides, currents, and relative sea-level rise are powerful forces that shape barrier island geomorphology and habitats (for example, beach, dune, marsh, and forest). Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and the Deep Water Horizon oil spill in 2010 are two major events that have affected habitats and natural resources on Dauphin Island, Alabama. The latter event prompted a collaborative effort between the U.S. Geological Survey, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and the State of Alabama funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to investigate viable, sustainable restoration options that protect and restore the natural resources of Dauphin Island, Alabama.

In order to understand the feasibility and sustainability of various restoration scenarios, it is important to understand current conditions on Dauphin Island. To further this understanding, a detailed 19-class habitat map for Dauphin Island was produced from 1-foot aerial infrared photography collected on December 4, 2015, and lidar data collected in January 2015. We also conducted a ground survey of habitat types, vegetation community structure, and elevations in November and December 2015. These products provide baseline data regarding the ecological and general geomorphological attributes of the area, which can be compared with observations from other dates for tracking changes over time.

Publication Year 2017
Title Barrier island habitat map and vegetation survey—Dauphin Island, Alabama, 2015
DOI 10.3133/ofr20171083
Authors Nicholas M. Enwright, Sinéad M. Borchert, Richard H. Day, Laura C. Feher, Michael J. Osland, Lei Wang, Hongqing Wang
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Open-File Report
Series Number 2017-1083
Index ID ofr20171083
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Wetland and Aquatic Research Center