Georegistering Aerial Photographs: Measuring Seagrass

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Georegistering Aerial Photographs:


  • Submerged flowering plant found in shallow marine or estuarine waters

  • Provides habitat for many commercially important animals

  • Disturbed by brown tide, low water quality, dredging, and propeller scarring

Project Goals:

  • Obtain unregistered aerial photograph

  • Obtain DOQQ’s

  • Use basemap with known coordinate system to register photograph

  • Use registered photograph to digitize and measure propscarring

1. Aerial Photograph

  • 1:9,600 format

  • Warren Pulich Jr., Ph.D.

  • International Institute for

  • Sustainable Water Resources

  • Texas State University

  • San Marcos, Texas

  • Coastal Bend Bays & Estuaries Program

2. Digital Orthophoto Quarter Quads

  • Computer generated image of aerial photograph with features represented in true geographic positions

  • Used as base map

    • Coordinate system:NAD83
    • Projection: UTM

DOQQ’s: Estes Flats

Texas Coast

Registering Aerial Photos

  • Add unregistered aerial photo to basemap

  • Use Georeferencing tools to align aerial photo with basemap

1st Order Polynomial

2nd Order Polynomial

3rd Order Polynomial

Registered Map

Measuring PropScars

  • ArcCatalog: Create New Feature Class

  • Use editor and sketch tool to trace along each prop scar

  • Open attribute table of New Line feature class and sum total length of new lines

Digitized Propeller Scars


  • Higher resolution photo needed for measuring smaller scars

  • Thanks. Questions?

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