Detecting Water Hyacinth Infestation in Kuttanad, India, Using Dual-Pol Sentinel-1 SAR Imagery

Simpson, M D and Akbari, V and Marino, A and Prabhu, G N and Bhowmik, D and Rupavatharam, S and Datta, A and Kleczkowski, A and Sujeetha, J A R P and Anantrao, G G and Poduvattil, V K and Kumar, S and Maharaj, S and Hunter, P D (2022) Detecting Water Hyacinth Infestation in Kuttanad, India, Using Dual-Pol Sentinel-1 SAR Imagery. Remote Sensing, 14 (12). pp. 1-24. ISSN 2072-4292

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Water hyacinth (Pontederia crassipes, also known as Eichhornia crassipes) is a highly invasive aquatic macrophyte species, indigenous to Amazonia, Brazil and tropical South America. It was introduced to India in 1896 and has now become an environmental and social challenge throughout the country in community ponds, freshwater lakes, irrigation channels, rivers and most other surface waterbodies. Considering its large speed of propagation on the water surface under conducive conditions and the adverse impact the infesting weed has, constant monitoring is needed to aid civic bodies, governments and policy makers involved in remedial measures. The synoptic coverage provided by satellite imaging and other remote sensing practices make it convenient to find a solution using this type of data. While there is an established background for the practice of remote sensing in the detection of aquatic plants, the use of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) has yet to be fully exploited in the detection of water hyacinth. This research focusses on detecting water hyacinth within Vembanad Lake, Kuttanad, India. Here, results show that the monitoring of water hyacinth has proven to be possible using Sentinel-1 SAR data. A quantitative analysis of detection performance is presented using traditional and state-of-the-art change detectors. Analysis of these more powerful detectors showed true positive detection ratings of ~95% with 0.1% false alarm, showing significantly greater positive detection ratings when compared to the more traditional detectors. We are therefore confident that water hyacinth can be monitored using SAR data provided the extent of the infestation is significantly larger than the resolution cell (bigger than a quarter of a hectare).

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Global Research Program - Resilient Farm and Food Systems
Uncontrolled Keywords: water hyacinth, Sentinel-1, SAR, change detection
Subjects: Others > Digital Agriculture
Depositing User: Mr Nagaraju T
Date Deposited: 17 Jan 2024 08:38
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2024 08:38
Official URL:
Acknowledgement: Thanks to Cristian Silva, Stirling University, for help with coding some of the algorithms.
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