Using satellite imagery to create a coastal habitat classification for use in conservation planning for the Three Kings Islands
There are fourteen coastal biogeographic regions that are used in conservation and management in New Zealand, with some that are remote and difficult to study the habitats within them. In the mapping of these remote regions, satellite imagery can assist in the process of creating a reserve network through the classification of marine and coastal habitats. The research created a coastal and nearshore marine habitat classification of the Three Kings Islands using the eight multi-spectral bands of the WorldView-2 satellite imagery. This was done through the use of remote sensing and GIS software that helped in the identification and mapping of habitats. The habitats were then used in conjunction with Marxan, a decision support tool, to identify reserve systems that met the needs for biodiversity protection within the Three Kings Islands coastal biogeographic region. The Three Kings Islands coastal habitats have been identified through the use of satellite imagery with habitats identified within the terrestrial and marine zones. The habitats that were derived from the region of interests were more likely to be identified when using the classification results of maximum likelihood with all the bands available from the WorldView-2 satellite. Using Marxan and the classified habitats from satellite imagery I have identified that using a scenario of 30% could be used in any conservation strategy that is employed by the management authority of the biogeographic region as it selected the largest areas of irreplaceability.