Neural network-based light attenuation model for monitoring seagrass population in the Indian river lagoon

M. T. Musavi, H. Ressom, S. Srirangam, P. Natarajan, R. W. Virnstein, L. J. Morris, W. Tweedale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Seagrasses have been considered one of the most critical marine habitat types of coastal and estuarine ecosystems such as the Indian River Lagoon. They are an important part of biological productivity, nutrient cycling, habitat stabilization and species diversity and are the primary focus of restoration efforts in the Indian River Lagoon. The areal extent of seagrasses has declined within segments of the lagoon over the years. Light availability to seagrasses is a major criterion limiting their distribution. Decreased water clarity and resulting reduced light penetration have been cited as the major factors responsible for the decline in seagrasses in the lagoon. Hence, light is a critical factor for the survival of seagrass species. Light attenuation coefficient is an important parameter that indicates the light attenuated by the water column and can therefore be used as an indicator of seagrass vigor. A number of region-specific linear light attenuation models have been proposed in the literature. Though, in practice, linear light attenuation models have been commonly used, there is need for a flexible and robust model that incorporates the non-linearities present in coastal and estuarine environments. This paper presents a neural network based model to estimate light attenuation coefficient from water quality parameters and thereby indirectly monitor seagrass population in the Indian River Lagoon. The proposed neural network models were compared with linear regression models, step-wise linear regression models, model trees and support vector machines. The neural network models performed fairly better compared to the other models considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)63-77
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Intelligent Information Systems
Issue number1
StatePublished - Aug 2007
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Information Systems
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Artificial Intelligence


  • Levenberg-Marquardt
  • Model trees
  • Regression models
  • Support vector machines
  • Water quality


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