Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Dr. Charles Emerson

Second Advisor

Lisa DeChano-Cook, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Chansheng He, Ph.D.


Phragmites, phenology, spectral, spectroradiometer, National Agriculture Imagery Program (NAIP)

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


Michigan Great Lakes wetlands are among Michigan’s most significant bio-diversified ecosystems. One threat to this ecosystem is invasive species. Phragmites australis is one of these invasive species creating problems in the wetlands. Identifying Phragmites through satellite imagery creates difficulties in discriminating Phragmites from other vegetation accurately. This study used an ASD HandHeld 2 field spectroradiometer to identify the phenological spectral properties between Phragmites and cattails. The Euclidean distance was analyzed the spectral curves from the spectroradiometer to determine the separability between Phragmites and cattails. The largest Euclidean distance determined the best month to separate the spectral signatures of Phragmites and cattails. The spectroradiometer hyperspectral data for Phragmites and cattails were averaged to coincide with National Agriculture Imagery Program imagery bandwidths. Applying Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) to the averaged bandwidths for Phragmites and cattails, the value for each month was analyzed using Euclidean distance. Results showed that the best time of the year to distinguish Phragmites from cattails was in the fall.