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Indicator plant species detection in grassland using EfficientDet object detector

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Gesellschaft für Informatik e.V.


Extensively used grasslands (meadows and pastures) are ecologically valuable areas in the agricultural landscape and part of the multifunctional agriculture. In Germany, the quality of these grasslands is assessed based on the occurrence of certain plant species known as indicator or character species, with indicators being defined at regional level. Therefore, the recognition of these indicators on a spatial level is a prerequisite for monitoring grassland biodiversity. The identification of indicator species for the status quo of grassland using traditional methods was found to be challenging and tedious. Deep learning-algorithms applied to high-resolution UAV imagery could be the key solution, where UAV with remote sensors can map a large area of grassland in comparison to manual or ground mapping methods and deep learning-algorithms can automate the detection process. In this research work, we use an EfficientDet based algorithm to train an object detection model capable of recognizing indicators on RGB data. The experimental results show that this approach is very promising in contrast to the difficult and time-consuming manual recognition methods. The model was trained with the momentum-SGD optimizer with a momentum value of 0.9 and a learning rate of 0.0001. The model was trained and tested on 1200 images and achieves 45.7 AP (and 85.7 AP50) on test data set. The dataset includes images of four distinct indicator plant species: Armeria maritima, Campanula patula, Cirsium oleraceum, and Daucus carota


Basavegowda, Deepak Hanike; Mosebach, Paul; Schleip, Inga; Weltzien, Cornelia (2022): Indicator plant species detection in grassland using EfficientDet object detector. 42. GIL-Jahrestagung, Künstliche Intelligenz in der Agrar- und Ernährungswirtschaft. Bonn: Gesellschaft für Informatik e.V.. PISSN: 1617-5468. ISBN: 978-3-88579-711-1. pp. 57-62. Tänikon, Online. 21.-22. Februar 2022