Date of Completion
Land Use/Cover Change; Invasive Species; Driving Forces; Change Prediction
Field of Study
Doctor of Philosophy
Land use/cover change (LUCC) is a major threat to ecosystems. It affects the abundance and distribution of invasive species. LUCC modeling is an important approach to understand what happened on the landscape and what may change in the future. This doctoral dissertation aims to predict LUCC in the Long Island Sound Watersheds and understand its effect on invasive species by using a combination of modeling methods and GIS analyses. The research includes the following aspects: First, the analysis of driving forces of LUCC, which is a prerequisite to investigate and manage the effects and consequences of LUCC. Second, the interpretation of spatial patterns of landscapes, which measures the auto and cross correlations of different landscape categories. Third, the prediction of future LUCCs, which is essential for understanding and highlighting what happened and might happen over landscapes. Fourth, the estimation of potential effects of the future LUCC on the range size of an invasive species (glossy buckthorn, Frangula alnus, as an example), which is important for conserving habitat and other natural resources. The broader impacts of this study, including the prospective simulation, are that it may provide sustainable and efficient decision supports to land use planners, resource managers, and conservation practitioners for the land planning, ecological sustainability, and environmental management, and it may also support the development of proactive strategies to overcome the challenges caused by LUCC and migrate the economic costs associated with invasive species.
Zhai, Ruiting, "Modeling Land Use/Cover Change and Its Effect on Invasive Species in Long Island Sound Watersheds" (2020). Doctoral Dissertations. 2475.