Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Learning about riparian areas from photographs

22.03.2010
Using repeat photography to enhance understanding of riparian areas
MADISON, WI, March 22nd, 2010-Riparian areas, ecosystems caught between the land and the stream, are subject to spatial and temporal variability.

Effectively managing and protecting riparian areas as well as other ecosystems require understanding these concepts. Fortunately, scientists are investigating new approaches in experiential learning, or learning from direct experiences.

One of those approaches is photography. By taking photographs of a specific site for a period of years (repeat photography), you can see if changes have occurred. From the personal experiences of two scientists from the University of Arizona, Dr. George Zaimes and Dr. Michael Crimmins, illustrations can be effective educational tools for explaining difficult concepts; this is particularly true in using before and after pictures of riparian sites or other natural ecosystems.

Zaimes and Crimmins developed two experiential learning exercises using existing repeat photographs of riparian areas in the state of Arizona that were presented in two different workshops. The results are published in the 2010 Journal of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Education, published by the American Society of Agronomy, the Crop Science Society of America, and the Soil Science Society of America. Funding for this project was provided by University of Arizona Cooperative Extension.

For each exercise, participants were split into small groups and given sets of repeat photographs of riparian areas, along with worksheets, data series or a map to correlate with the repeat photographs, and encouraged to discuss together and then present their findings. The objective of these exercises was to provide insight into the temporal and spatial variability of riparian areas, and the response of these areas to climatic changes and land management practices.

Participant evaluations revealed that using repeat photographs enhanced their understanding of spatial and temporal variability and potential climate change impacts on riparian areas. Developing repeat photography into experiential learning exercises will provide Extension agents an entertaining and effective way of comprehending changes in ecosystems, such as riparian areas. Since the exercises are interactive, stakeholders with different backgrounds are encouraged to interact and learn from each other, strengthening the process.

Finally, while these exercises used riparian areas of Arizona and the southwestern U.S., they could easily be adapted to other ecosystems and other regions of the country. University courses could adapt them to studying riparian and other natural ecosystems. The technique of repeat photographs is a tool that should be better utilized for educational purposes by Extension specialists and other educators.

The full article is available for no charge for 30 days following the date of this summary. View the abstract at http://www.jnrlse.org/view/2010/e09-0042.pdf. After 30 days it will be available at the Journal of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Education website, www.jnrlse.org. Go to http://www.jnrlse.org/issues/ (Click on the Year, "View Article List," and scroll down to article abstract).

Today's educators are looking to the Journal of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Education, http://www.jnrlse.org, for the latest teaching techniques in the life sciences, natural resources, and agriculture. The journal is continuously updated online during the year and one hard copy is published in December by the American Society of Agronomy.

The American Society of Agronomy (ASA) www.agronomy.org, is a scientific society helping its 8,000+ members advance the disciplines and practices of agronomy by supporting professional growth and science policy initiatives, and by providing quality, research-based publications and a variety of member services.

Sara Uttech | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.agronomy.org

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht New 3-D model predicts best planting practices for farmers
26.06.2017 | Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

nachricht Fighting a destructive crop disease with mathematics
21.06.2017 | University of Cambridge

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Study shines light on brain cells that coordinate movement

26.06.2017 | Life Sciences

Smooth propagation of spin waves using gold

26.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Switchable DNA mini-machines store information

26.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>