This past summer I had the opportunity to work under the leadership of Scott Jackson as a salt marsh study intern. At this job we conducted drone flights to photograph a salt marsh study area. There were nine sites total along the whole coast of Massachusetts. These photographs were taken in RGB, red edge, near infrared, short wave infrared, and even LiDAR.
This work force is studying the changes in vegetation and elevation over time to understand the impacts of certain features like ditching, sea walls, and rising sea levels; as well as identify where conservation action might avoid a tipping point. My job as an intern was to conduct photogrammetry procedures into an Orthomosaic and Digital Elevation Model (DEM) for the analysis phase. Another job of mine was to help deploy 45 water loggers at two salt marsh sites to intensively measure the water levels and take survey points with an RTK GPS unit to validate the models. This job was extremely rewarding for me in solidifying my interest in GIS as well as work within salt marshes and other coastal ecosystems. I look forward to continuing my work with Scott Jackson this spring semester as well as my future in environmental conservation!