Mary Nichols, USDA-ARS Southwest Watershed Research Center.
Mike Crimmins, University of Arizona.
Bill Brandau, University of Arizona.
Photographs are an important source of documentation supporting the management of western U.S. rangelands. High resolution panoramic photography has the potential to vastly expand the value of photography in rangeland monitoring and documentation. The immediate objective of this research is to test the GigaPan system for taking repeat photographs supporting landscape change analyses. An initial test was conducted to relocate photo points in the San Simon Watershed in Arizona where landscape photographs were taken in 1941. Coupled photo pairs from 1941 and 2010 are posted to the GigaPan website where they can be annotated to incorporate both scientific interpretations and local knowledge. Work is ongoing to quantify landscape and vegetation changes in the photographs. These changes will be interpreted in the context of high seasonal and inter-annual variability identified in measured rainfall. Initial field work has successfully demonstrated the use of GigaPan technology in landscape photography for documenting change.