Land Use Changes in Pak Panang Bay using Arial Photographs and Geographic Information System
Keywords:Land use, Pak Panang Bay, GIS, aerial photograph
This study investigates land use changes around Pak Panang Bay, Nakhon Si Thammarat Province by using aerial photographs and geographic information system techniques. The aerial maps on 1:15,000 scale produced by The Royal Thai Survey Department in 1974, 1991 and 2003 were interpreted as a land use map in each year. The land use map of 1974 was then compared to those maps of 1999 and 2003. A prominent result of this study revealed that shrimp farm areas around the bay dramatically increased from zero hectares in 1974 to 1,954 hectares in 1995 and expanded to 2,592 hectares in 2003. An increase in shrimp farm areas in Pak Panang Bay in 2003 concurred with a decrease in 1,114 hectares of mangroves, 918 hectares of paddy fields and 560 hectares of other types of land uses in 1974, respectively. The severe expansion of shrimp farm areas into the mangrove areas has directly affected the eco-system of Pak Panang Bay, which was declared a Ramsar Site in 2000. The results of this study could be used for the management and conservation of the bay in order to meet the regulation standards of the Ramsar Site Convention.
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