Natural Hazards

, Volume 53, Issue 1, pp 175–194 | Cite as

Vegetation recovery and landscape change assessment at Chiufenershan landslide area caused by Chichi earthquake in central Taiwan

  • Chao-Yuan Lin
  • Chin-Wei Chuang
  • Wen-Tzu Lin
  • Wen-Chieh Chou


This study discusses vegetation recovery and land cover change with reference to the Chiufenershan landslide, a major disaster caused by the Chichi earthquake, 21 September 1999. Image classification technology, landscape indicators from multi-temporal remotely sensed data and a field survey provide the data. Image differencing methods and threshold values coupled with pre- and post-quake satellite images were used. Multi-temporal images in combination with various vegetation indices were drawn on to classify land cover patterns and discuss differences and suitability of indices. Landscape indicators and field investigations fed into an investigation of vegetation recovery and landscape change. The study results show that the best image classification system is original wavebands coupled with a cropping management factor index (CMFI). The land cover analysis shows that areas of forest and grass are increasing and areas of landslide are decreasing. From the field investigation, because the left and right sides of the landslide area were not disturbed by the earthquake, their calculated similarity index is the highest (30.08%). Miscanthus floridulus is the most dominant pioneer plant at the landslide collapse area with an importance value index (IVI) of 63.6%.


Landslide Remote sensing Vegetation index Vegetation recovery 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chao-Yuan Lin
    • 1
  • Chin-Wei Chuang
    • 1
  • Wen-Tzu Lin
    • 2
  • Wen-Chieh Chou
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Soil and Water ConservationNational Chung Hsing UniversityTaichung CityTaiwan, ROC
  2. 2.Department of Design for Sustainable EnvironmentMing Dao UniversityChanghua CountyTaiwan, ROC
  3. 3.Department of Civil Engineering and Engineering InformaticsChung Hua UniversityHsinchu CityTaiwan, ROC

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