Analyses of Spatial, Ecological, Socio-economic, and Institutional Data Ensure Sustainable and Efficient Use of Forest Resources  

Ecolo-GIS technology enables forestry experts to complete large scale mapping and surveys, and also provides them with a tool for forest management.  The spatial analysis integrates data from many sources including satellite imagery, aerial photography, field surveys, and wildlife and botanical studies.  Land Use and Land Cover (LULC) surveys, together with change detection, are employed to manage natural forest, wood plantations, reserves and parks.

Satellite and aerial imagery are acquired according to project requirements.  Versatility and flexibility in imagery data sources allows Ecolo-GIS to provide the most suitable information for the project.  Images are classified, using supervised classification techniques, to generate GIS covers that provide information over space and time.

Spatial data is stored and managed within an Cloud GIS environment, to facilitate monitoring and collaboration between decision-makers.  Unique visualization technology supports effective ecosystem monitoring, decision-making, and information dissemination.

The Ecolo-GIS team includes experts in the fields of ecology and economics.  Together they provide detailed recommendations on project and site management; how to minimize conflict with the surrounding environment, improve sustainability and promote conservation.  IFC “Equator Principals” and other international conventions are consulted and utilized to supplement project finance.  The management package is available as a modular or turnkey solution.

Mapping Forest Cover for Forest Inventory 

Managers can monitor forest development using forest cover mapping. Orthophotos and satellite images map forest canopy cover and can be used to estimate percent cover in forest stands.  Forest cover is mapped using supervised classification techniques in a GIS environment. Specific indexes, processes and procedures are developed during the classification process. The result is a highly accurate classification of forest canopy.

The images show classification and canopy cover mapping of a planted forest.  The image on the left is an aerial orthophoto (pixel size = 1m),  the image on the right shows the classification result.  The forest canopy cover was divided into three tree types: pine (green); cyprus (blue) and other trees (brown).

Monitoring and Mapping Clear Cutting in the Amazon Forest

Ecolo-GIS has developed methods to delineate and map clear-cut patches in the Amazon Forest, using satellite images or aerial photography. The mapping can be used for monitoring clear cutting as a result of illegal logging, or for identifying illegal crops in the jungle.   

The image shows clear-cut patches in the Amazon Forest (blue patches) that were identified using supervised classification methods to create a GIS cover. The project was conducted using ISI satellite imagery.

Monitoring and Mapping Forest Fires

Fires have an important impact on forest ecosystems.  Ecolo-GIS has developed methods to delineate and map burnt patches in forests using satellite images (EROS satellites) or aerial photography. This type of mapping can be used to monitor burnt areas, determine fire impact on the forest ecosystem and to evaluate ecosystem recovery.

The images demonstrate mapping of burnt patches in the Central African Republic savanna. The images show the burnt area (left), delineation of  the burnt area (center), and differentiation between the burnt grasses of the savanna and the non-burnt trees (right).  Project conducted with Icaros GeoSystems LTD.  Satellite image taken by ISI.


Forest Biodiversity

Biodiversity is an important component of the forest ecosystem. Ecolo-GIS has demonstrated the ability to map and identify different tree species and other types of vegetation using high resolution aerial photography and satellite imagery.

The images show mapping of common oak (Quercus Calliprinos) trees (light green) in a Mediterranean habitat in Northern Israel.  The project was conducted with Icaros GeoSystems LTD.  Aerial Image taken by Icaros GeoSystems.