Investigating the Land Cover Changes in Mazandaran Province Using Landscape Ecology's Metrics Between 1984 - 2010
Land cover has rapidly changed due to the relatively high population density، high rate of seasonal and permanent migrants، favorable conditions of natural and cultural، frequency of industrial units، coastal border and harbour and great rate of construction in the mazandaran province in recent years. Land cover changes are led to fragmentation، perforation، dissection، shirinkage، attrition and coalescence in the landscape، which each of them has important concept in the landscape ecology science. In this study، after preparing land cover maps، landscape metrics were extracted then Principal component analysis (PCA) were used in order to selection appropriate metrics for Mazandaran landscape changes analysis during 1984 and 2010. Finally five metric including Class Area (CA)، Number of Patches (NP)، Largest Patch Index (LPI)، Perimeter-Area Fractal Dimension (PAFRAC) and Shannon Diversity Index (SHDI) were selected as the appropriate metrics. The results show an increase in the extent of residential، agricultural، pasture، roads covers (7387، 54655، 88986، 4768 ha، respectively) and sharp decline in forests (162،867 ha). Such that، LPI of forest cover decreased in the Neka، Savadkooh، Sari and Tonekabon cities 17. 5، 13. 8، 8. 6 and 4. 9 respectively، during the study period and matrix change were observed from forest to pasture and agriculture in Ramsar and Behshahr cites. More changes have been happened due to digestion forest of patches to anthropogenic covers especially integration of agricultural land.