This is a week long module on “Space and Conservation” for the third year course Conservation: Genes, Population & Biodiversity (BIO3014S).
The conservation of biodiversity is a wicked problem, but in the absence of perfect knowledge, we need pragmatic solutions. This largely boils down to the use of space. The prioritisation, allocation and management of geographic space, but also the use of tools that allow broad-scale mapping and monitoring of biodiversity and conservation actions, such as space-borne remote sensing platforms. This module of the course will explore how both meanings of space are used in global and local biodiversity conservation, including some advantages and limitations of these approaches.
Students will have some insight into the field of spatial conservation planning, approaches for remote sensing of biodiversity, conservation prioritisation tools and informants like the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and Ecosystems, and how these are applied in South Africa.
The module includes 4 lectures, a practical and a discussion of a journal article.
We’ll be using remap to play with mapping ecosystems using satellite remote sensing.
Remap is an online mapping platform for people with little technical background in remote sensing. It enables you to quickly map and report the status of ecosystems, contributing to the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems. The exercise is aimed at giving you greater insight into many of the challenges faced and assumptions or pragmatic decisions required when mapping and monitoring ecosystems.
Read through the steps below and assignment instructions before getting started.
Please answer the questions below. Where possible, contextualise your answers by highlighting how they relate to the approach we adopted in this practical and/or illustrate them with examples from your analyses - e.g. where your classifier did well or badly or changed with different settings or training data (provide figures with captions where relevant).
Each question is worth 5 marks and shouldn’t be more than half a page. An additional 4 marks will be awarded for providing appropriately cited and relevant references (and reference list). This brings the total mark allocation to 24 marks.
Please provide your write-up as a PDF. Please also submit your JSON file labelled with your name.