Lunetta, RS, Shao, Y, Ediriwickrema, J, Lyon, JG (2010). Monitoring agricultural cropping patterns across the Laurentian Great Lakes Basin using MODIS-NDVI data. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF APPLIED EARTH OBSERVATION AND GEOINFORMATION, 12(2), 81-88.
The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) 16-day composite data product (MOD12Q) was used to develop annual cropland and crop-specific map products (corn, soybeans, and wheat) for the Laurentian Great Lakes Basin (GLB). The crop area distributions and changes in crop rotations were characterized by comparing annual crop map products for 2005, 2006, and 2007. The total acreages for corn and soybeans were relatively balanced for calendar years 2005 (31,462 km(2) and 31,283 km(2), respectively) and 2006 (30,766 km(2) and 30,972 km(2), respectively). Conversely, corn acreage increased approximately 21% from 2006 to 2007, while soybean and wheat acreage decreased approximately 9% and 21%, respectively. Two-year crop rotational change analyses were conducted for the 2005-2006 and 2006-2007 time periods. The large increase in corn acreages for 2007 introduced crop rotation changes across the GLB. Compared to 2005-2006, crop rotation patterns for 2006-2007 resulted in increased corn-corn, soybean-corn, and wheat-corn rotations. The increased corn acreages could have potential negative impacts on nutrient loadings, pesticide exposures, and sediment-mediated habitat degradation. Increased in US corn acreages in 2007 were related to new biofuel mandates, while Canadian increases were attributed to higher world-wide corn prices. Additional study is needed to determine the potential impacts of increases in corn-based ethanol agricultural production on watershed ecosystems and receiving waters. Published by Elsevier B.V.