Airborne remote sensing for mapping of protected habitats

Yeat 2014 was dominated by studying the habitats of European (EU) importance in Latvia's specially protected territories. On December 12th IES's researchers will present the study's results to the wider audience during the final project seminar.


In spring 2014, IES launched the project on the development of a new methodology for the mapping and assessment of habitats of EU importance. So far, human influence has resulted in a loss of biodiversity, which is combated by an EU directive requiring support conservation, management and restoration of natural habitats. The minimum target is ensuring the survival of species by preserving their suitable habitats for future generations. The existing field-based habitat mapping could take years, so we started to test new methods for faster and more affordable data collection and analysis.


IES’s professionals have scrutinized the collected data from 33 protected sites in Latvia acquired by airborne remote sensing technologies. Final results have been tested and verified, opening an innovative route to further habitat mapping and assessment to support long-term conservation. During the seminar IES’s specialists will give the insight into the applicability of remote sensing for habitat mapping and status assessment; a high resolution laser scanning and hyperspectral data analysis; as well as the IES’s innovative and cost-effective approach for habitats’ mapping.

The aim of the project was to adapt and test the airborne remote sensing data analysis solutions for the mapping of the protected habitats of EU importance within and beyond the specially protected areas in Latvia.

The project is financed by: Latvian Environment Protection Fund Administration


More about the project