Improving Stream Restoration: Developing Methods to Evaluate the Ecological Condition of Streams Using Small Unmanned Aerial Systems and Close-Range Remote Sensing Techniques
Stream restoration professionals need ecological assessment approaches that are affordable, repeatable, objective, and efficient to develop science-based restoration techniques and better understand how to improve the ecological health of our waterways. Alexandra’s research aims to develop stream ecological assessment approaches using small unmanned aerial systems and structure-from-motion photogrammetry to increase our understanding of restoration impacts and improve the stream professional’s toolkit. Photos, video, orthomosaics, and digital surface models are created using this technology. These products’ quantitative and qualitative uses in ecological assessments are explored in her research to create flexible workflows. Alexandra’s research is part of a larger, interdisciplinary NSF project: “Strengthening the scientific basis for decision-making about dams: Multi-scale, coupled-systems research on ecological, social, and economic trade-offs.”
Previous Awards and Activities
- “Best Student Talk” at the Society for Ecological Restoration New England Regional Conference- October 2018
- 2nd Place Winner of the NH Social Venture Innovation Challenge- November 2016
- AD Evans, S Greenwood, KH Gardner, B Still. December 2018. Using Remote Sensing Techniques to Examine Changes in Vegetation Following Dam Removal and Installation of a Nature-like Fishway. Poster presented at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, Washington D.C.
- AD Evans, S Greenwood, KH Gardner, D Burchsted. October 2018. Drones and River Restoration: Assessing Geomorphic Impacts Downstream of a Small Dam Removal with Aerial Remote Sensing Approaches. Talk at the Society for Ecological Restoration New England Regional Conference, New Haven CT.
- AD Evans, S Greenwood, KH Gardner. September 2018. Observing the Transition of Beard’s Creek Pond from Lentic to Lotic Conditions Post-Dam Drawdown. Poster presented at the Northeast Graduate Student Water Symposium, Amherst MA.
- AD Evans, S Greenwood, KH Gardner. April 2018. A Comparison of Imagery Collection Methods for Rendering 3D Models of River Landscapes Using Structure-from-Motion and Small Unmanned Aerial Systems. Illustrated Paper at the American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting, New Orleans LA.
- AD Evans, KH Gardner. November 2017. The Future of Dams: Collaborations with Small Unmanned Aerial System Imagery to Improve Dam Decision-making. Poster at the NSF EPSCoR 25th National Conference, Missoula MT.
Education & Certificates
- B.S. Environmental Science (concentration in Geology, minors in both Economics and Sustainability Studies), Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY- 2015
- M.S. Geology, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY- 2015
- FAA Part 107 Remote Pilot Certificate- April 2017
Member of the Emerging Professionals Committee for the Society for Ecological Restoration New England Chapter December 2018