University of Twente Student Theses


Evaluating implications of catchment land use And land cover changes on abundance and Breeding of greater flamingo (phoenicopterus rubber Roseus ) at fuente de Piedra Lagoon, Spain

Wambugu, Jane Wagaki (2010) Evaluating implications of catchment land use And land cover changes on abundance and Breeding of greater flamingo (phoenicopterus rubber Roseus ) at fuente de Piedra Lagoon, Spain.

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Abstract:Temporal and spatial changes in land use in an area over time have been associated with detrimental environmental impacts. Such effects include impacting on water resources eventually on biodiversity present as catchment irrigated lands dramatically increase against limited water reserves. In this study, the intensification of irrigated olive farming for the period 1984 to 2009 was presumed to impact on available groundwater resources, eventually impacting on the Greater Flamingo presence and breeding patterns in one of the major breeding grounds, Fuente de Piedra lagoon. Principal component analysis as a method of change detection indicated significant land use transitions in this catchment over the study period characterised by a drastic change from natural ecosystems of natural forests, shrub lands and heath lands to extensive monocultures of olive and increased urbanization. Single crop coefficient approach and up-scaling of sap flow methods integrated with remote sensing used to quantify temporal olive evapotranspiration potential indicate an increasing trend from 1.1 Hm3 in 1984 from an olive extent of 30km2 to 3.8Hm3 in 2009 from an olive extent of 70km2. This against annual precipitation was observed to have a negative relationship, therefore then inferred to impact on lake water levels; being a closed basin that heavily depend on precipitation among other factors for surface water retention. Statistical analyses indicate a positive correlation between high lake water levels and presence and successful breeding of the Greater Flamingo in this lake. Increased olive evapotranspiration was found to heavily impact on available groundwater resources resulting to drastic decline in monthly lake water levels. This results to constrained food availability and declining habitat suitability for the breeding flamingos eventually causing sporadic presence and/or complete abstinence from breeding of the Greater flamingo over time. This eventually impacts on the recruitment potential of this population that over time could lead to its disappearance from this lake. Understanding the drivers and implications of land use and land cover changes in an area may provide the only solution to better land management strategies. This study recommends further research on reliability of irrigation systems in optimizing water application to enhance equity in allocation of a limited resource, water. Keywords: Land-use, land-cover, principal component analysis, olive evapotranspiration, sap flow, Greater flamingo
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:ITC: Faculty of Geo-information Science and Earth Observation
Programme:Geoinformation Science and Earth Observation MSc (75014)
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