Seagrass and seaweeds (SAVs) play a key support role to general coastal environment. Previous efforts in mapping seagrass meadows and seaweed environments are confined to finding empirical relationships between remotely-sensed signals and seagrass biophysical characteristics. A theoretical basis for modeling seagrass reflectance may provide further insights to photo-ecology of submerged aquatic vegetation. Mapping SAVs is part of our laboratory's overall research on shallow water reef bio-morphology.
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Seagrass photographed in Okitsu area, east Chiba

Mapping SAVs include discrimination against other benthic cover (e.g. sand, rocks, macroalgae, coral), assessment of coverage (% cover), extracting bathymetry, estimating standing crop (wet weight) or biomass (dry weight) and canopy height.

Left: Illustration showing the overall approach to the development of a physically-based spectral reflectance model for SAVs and their enveloping environment (water column, water surface and atmosphere).

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