Aerial Videotape Mapping of Coastal Geomorphic Changes

by Karolien Debusschere, Louisiana Geological Survey, Baton Rouge, United States,
Shea Penland, Louisiana Geological Survey, Baton Rouge, United States,
Karen A. Westphal, Louisiana Geological Survey, Baton Rouge, United States,
P. Douglas Reimer, Louisiana Geological Survey, Baton Rouge, United States,
Randolph A. McBride, Louisiana Geological Survey, Baton Rouge, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Zone '91


An aerial geomorphic mapping system was developed to examine the spatial and temporal variability in the coastal geomorphology of Louisiana. Between 1984 and 1990 eleven sequential annual and post-hurricane aerial videotape surveys were flown covering periods of prolonged fair weather, hurricane impacts and subsequent post-storm recoveries. A coastal geomorphic classification system was developed to map the spatial and temporal geomorphic changes between these surveys. The classification system is based on 10 years of shoreline monitoring, analysis of aerial photography for 1940-1989, and numerous field surveys. The classification system divides shorelines into two broad classes: natural and altered. Each class consists of several genetically linked categories of shorelines. Each category is further subdivided into morphologic types on the basis of landform relief, elevation, habitat type, vegetation density and type, and sediment characteristics. The classification is used with imagery from the low-altitude, high-resolution aerial videotape surveys to describe and quantify the longshore and cross-shore geomorphic, sedimentologic, and vegetative character of Louisiana's shoreline systems. The mapping system makes it possible to delineate and map detailed geomorphic habitat changes at a resolution higher than that of conventional vertical aerial photography. Morphologic units are mapped parallel to the regional shoreline from the aerial videotape imagery onto the base maps at a scale of 1:24,000. The base maps were constructed from vertical aerial photography concurrent with the data of the video imagery.

Subject Headings: Mapping | Shoreline protection | Aerial photography | Hurricanes, typhoons, and cyclones | Aerial surveys | Geodetic surveys | Vegetation | Sediment | Louisiana | United States

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