ISSN 2070-7401 (Print), ISSN 2411-0280 (Online)
Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa


Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2022, Vol. 19, No. 6, pp. 108-123

Long-term arid pasture landscapes NDVI dynamics in European Russia and adjacent territories

S.S. Shinkarenko 1 , S.А. Bartalev 1 
1 Space Research Institute RAS, Moscow, Russia
Accepted: 28.10.2022
DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2022-19-6-108-123
The article presents the results of the analysis of the long-term dynamics of the average and maximum NDVI values during the growing season for pastures in the southeast of European Russia and Western Kazakhstan. The research is based on the MODIS data for the period of 2001–2020. The current studies of landscape condition trends often do not differentiate between pastures and arable land and do not take into account pasture loads. Moreover, they are limited to the territories of individual countries, regions or test sites. The present research outlines a correlation analysis of the long-term NDVI series, including the total precipitation for hydrological and calendar years, the average annual air temperatures, the maximum air temperatures during the growing season, as well as pasture loads. We have established a significant positive correlation between the landscape condition and the amount of precipitation during the hydrological year on 98 % of the pasture area. The strongest negative impact of air temperatures and pasture loads is observed on 44.5 and 55 % of pastures, respectively. An area of 20 million ha (24 % of the studied pastures) is characterized by a significant negative trend in the average NDVI value for the growing season. 72 % of pastures are characterized by a negative trend in precipitation amount; 83% of pastures are characterized by a significant trend in the increase of pasture loads; and 59 % of pastures are characterized by a positive trend for an increase in maximum temperatures during the growing season. Thus, as a result of the research, the regularities of the long-term dynamics of the NDVI of arid pastures in Russia and adjacent territories have been established, and key factors for reducing their productivity have been identified. They include deterioration in moisture conditions, an increase in air temperature and pasture loads.
Keywords: pasture loads, remote sensing, MODIS, Northern Caspian, Western Kazakhstan
Full text


  1. Bananova V. A., Lazareva V. G., Trends of changes in the botanical diversity under the influence of desertification in the republic of Kalmykia, Arid Ecosystems. 2014, Vol. 4, No. 2, pp. 119–126, DOI: 10.1134/S2079096114020024.
  2. Bartalev S. A., Egorov V. A., Zharko V. O., Loupian E. A., Plotnikov D. E., Khvostikov S. A., Shabanov N. V., Land cover mapping over Russia using Earth observation data, Moscow: IKI RAN, 2016, 208 p. (in Russian).
  3. Breido M. D., Zhirin V. M., Bartalev S. A., Bakhtinova E. V., Identification of forage resources features in desert grazing from aerospace data, Issledovanie Zemli iz kosmosa, 1989, No. 3, pp. 66–76 (in Russian).
  4. Vlasenko M. V., Kulik A. K., Salugin A. N., Evaluation of the Ecological Status and Loss of Productivity of Arid Pasture Ecosystems of the Sarpa Lowland, Arid Ecosystems, 2019, Vol. 9, No. 4, pp. 273–281, DOI: 10.1134/S2079096119040097.
  5. Eroshenko F. V., Bartalev S. A., Lapenko N. G., Samofal E. V., Storchak I. G., Capabilities for rangelands state and degradation assessment using remote sensing data, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2018, Vol. 15, No. 7, pp. 53–66 (in Russian), DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2018-15-7-53-66.
  6. Esmagulova B. Zh., Tkachenko N. A., Forest reclamation of grassland on Urda sands (within Bokey Orda district of West Kazakhstan region), Izvestiya Nizhnevolzhskogo agrouniversitetskogo kompleksa: nauka i vysshee professional’noe obrazovanie, 2016, No. 2(42), pp. 127–134 (in Russian).
  7. Zolotokrylin A. N., Vinogradova V. V., Relation between climatic and anthropogenic factors of re-vegetation in the south-east of European Russia, Aridnye ekosistemy, 2007, Vol. 14, No. 33–34, pp. 7–16 (in Russian).
  8. Zolotokrylin A. N., Cherenkova E. A., Titkova T. B., Aridization of Drylands in the European Part of Russia: Secular Trends and Links to Droughts, Izvestiya Rossiiskoi akakemii nauk. Seriya geograficheskaya, 2020, Vol. 84, No. 2, pp. 207–217 (in Russian), DOI: 10.31857/S258755662002017X.
  9. Kulik K. N., Esmagulova B. Zh., Kosheleva O. Yu., Mushaeva K. B., Shinkarenko S. S., Phytocenoses change of the area between Volga and Ural under the influence of grazing, Vestnik Voronezhskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Ser. Geografiya. Geoekologiya, 2016, No. 4, pp. 25–32 (in Russian).
  10. Lazareva V. G., Bananova V. A., Nguen V. Z., Mapping the vegetation of the plain of the Sarpinsky lowland (Kalmykia) using remote sensing and GIS, Uspekhi sovremennogo estestvoznaniya, 2017, No. 12, pp. 178–183 (in Russian).
  11. Loboiko V. F., Esmagulova B. Zh., Tkachenko N. A., Phytoecological assessment and forest reclamative mapping of sand massive “Kandagash”, the Western Kazakhstan region the Republic of Kazakhstan, Izvestiya Nizhnevolzhskogo agrouniversitetskogo kompleksa: nauka i vysshee professional’noe obrazovanie, 2017, No. 2(46), pp. 211–218 (in Russian).
  12. Loupian E. A., Proshin A. A., Burtsev M. A., Balashov I. V., Bartalev S. A., Efremov V. Yu., Kashnitskiy A. V., Mazurov A. A., Matveev A. M., Sudneva O. A., Sychugov I. G., Tolpin V. A., Uvarov I. A., IKI center for collective use of satellite data archiving, processing and analysis systems aimed at solving the problems of environmental study and monitoring, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2015, Vol. 12, No. 5, pp. 263–284 (in Russian).
  13. National report “Global Climate and Soil Cover of Russia: Desertification and Land Degradation, Institutional, Infrastructure, Technological Adaptation Measures (Agriculture and Forestry)”, Moscow: OOO “Izdatel’stvo MBA”, 2019, Vol. 2, 476 p. (in Russian).
  14. O normakh nagruzki skota na pastbishchakh na territorii Respubliki Kalmykiya (On the norms for the load of livestock on pastures in the territory of the Republic of Kalmykia), Government of the Republic of Kalmykia: Order No. 158, Date 27.04.2006 (as amended by Order No. 116, Date 31.03.2014) (in Russian),
  15. Rulev A. S., Kanishchev S. N., Shinkarenko S. S., Analysis of NDVI seasonal dynamics of natural vegetation of Low Trans-Volga in Volgograd Region, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2016, Vol. 13, No. 4, pp. 113–123 (in Russian), DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2016-13-20-113-123.
  16. Ryabinina N. O., Kanishchev S. N., Shinkarenko S. S., The current state and dynamics of geosystems in the South-East of the Russian plain (by the example of the natural parks in Volgograd region), Yug Rossii: ekologiya i razvitie, 2018, No. 1, pp. 116–127 (in Russian), DOI: 10.18470/1992-1098-2018-1-116-127.
  17. Spivak L., Vitkovskaya I., Terekhov A., Batyrbayeva M., Monitoring of long-term changes of vegetation cover of arid and semi-arid zones of Kazakhstan with the use of remote sensing data, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2011, Vol. 8, No. 1, pp. 163–169 (in Russian).
  18. Telnova N. O., Revealing and mapping long-term NDVI trends for the analysis of climate change contribution to agroecosystems’ productivity dynamics in the Northern Eurasian forest-steppe and steppe, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2017, Vol. 14, No. 6, pp. 97–107 (in Russian), DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2017-14-6-97-107.
  19. Titkova T. B., Zolotokrylin A. N., Monitoring of lands affected by desertification in the Republic of Kalmykia, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2022, Vol. 19, No. 2, pp. 130–141 (in Russian), DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2022-19-2-130-141.
  20. Shinkarenko S. S., Impact assessment of grazing on vicinity of Elton landscapes, Nauchnoe obozrenie, 2015, No. 14, pp. 10–15 (in Russian).
  21. Shinkarenko S. S., Spatial-temporal dynamics of desertification in Black Lands, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2019, Vol. 16, No. 6, pp. 155–168 (in Russian), DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2019-16-6-155-168.
  22. Shinkarenko S. S., Bartalev S. A. (2020a), Consequences of dust storms in the south of the European part of Russia in September – October 2020, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniia Zemli iz kosmosa, 2020, Vol. 17, No. 7, pp. 270–275 (in Russian), DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2020-17-7-270-275.
  23. Shinkarenko S. S., Bartalev S. A. (2020b), NDVI seasonal dynamics of the North Caspian pasture landscapes according to MODIS data, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2020, Vol. 17, No. 4, pp. 179–194 (in Russian), DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2020-17-4-179-194.
  24. Shinkarenko S. S., Bartalev S. A., Assessment of desertification area in the south of the European part of Russia in 2021, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2021, Vol. 18, No. 4, pp. 291–297 (in Russian), DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2021-18-4-291-297.
  25. Shinkarenko S. S., Tkachenko N. A., Bartalev S. A., Yuferev V. G., Kulik K. N., Dust storms in the south of the European part of Russia in September – October 2020, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2020, Vol. 17, No. 5, pp. 291–296 (in Russian), DOI: 10.1134/S2079096118010067.
  26. Shinkarenko S. S., Doroshenko V. V., Berdengalieva A. N., Komarova I. A., Dynamics of arid landscapes burning of Russia and adjacent territories according to active fire data, Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2021, Vol. 18, No. 1, pp. 149–164 (in Russian), DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2021-18-1-149-164.
  27. Shinkarenko S. S., Doroshenko V. V., Berdengalieva A. N., Burned areas dynamics in zonal landscapes of the South-East of The European part of Russia, Izvestiya Rossiiskoi akademii nauk. Ser. geograficheskaya, 2022, Vol. 86, No. 1, pp. 122–133 (in Russian), DOI: 10.31857/S2587556622010113.
  28. Chen T., Tang G., Yuan Y., Guo H., Xu Z., Jiang G., Chen X., Unraveling the relative impacts of climate change and human activities on grassland productivity in Central Asia over last three decades, Science of the Total Environment, 2020, Vol. 473, p. 160469, DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.140649.
  29. Dedova E. B., Goldvarg B. A., Tsagan-Mandzhiev N. L., Land Degradation of the Republic of Kalmykia: Problems and Reclamation Methods, Arid Ecosystems, 2020, Vol. 10, No. 2, pp. 140–147, DOI: 10.1134/S2079096120020043.
  30. Dubinin M., Lushekina A., Radeloff V. C., Climate, Livestock, and Vegetation: What Drives Fire Increase in the Arid Ecosystems of Southern Russia? Ecosystems, 2011, Vol. 14, pp. 547–562, DOI: 10.1007/s10021-011-9427-9.
  31. Hankerson B. R., Schierhorn F., Prischchepov A. V., Changxing D., Eisfelder C., Muller D., Modeling the spatial distribution of grazing intensity in Kazakhstan, PLoS One, 2019, Vol. 14, No. 1, p. e0210051, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0210051.
  32. Harris I., Osborn T. J., Jones P., Lister D., Version 4 of the CRU TS monthly high-resolution gridded multivariate climate dataset, Scientific Data, 2020, No. 7, Art. No. 109, DOI: 10.1038/s41597-020-0453-3.
  33. Hu Y., Han Y., Zhang Y., Land desertification and its influencing factors in Kazakhstan, J. Arid Environments, 2020, Vol. 180, Art. No. 104206, DOI: jaridenv.2020.104203.
  34. Karimova T. Y., Lushchekina A. A., Neronov V. M., Saiga Populations of Russia and Kazakhstan: Current Status and Retrospective Analysis of Some Biological Parameters, Arid Ecosystems, 2021, Vol. 11, No. 2, pp. 164–172, DOI: 10.1134/S2079096121020074.
  35. Kulik K. N., Petrov V. I., Rulev A. S., Kosheleva O. Y., Shinkarenko S. S., On the 30th anniversary of the “General plan to combat desertification of Black lands and Kizlyar pastures”, Arid Ecosystems, 2018, Vol. 8, No. 1, pp. 5–20, DOI: 10.1134/S2079096118010067.
  36. Kulik K. N., Petrov V. I., Yuferev V. G., Tkachenko N. A., Shinkarenko S. S., Geoinformational Analysis of Desertification of the Northwestern Caspian, Arid Ecosystems, 2020, Vol. 10, No. 2, pp. 98–105, DOI: 10.1134/S2079096120020080.
  37. Li Z., Huffman T., McConkey B., Townley-Smith L., Monitoring and modeling spatial and temporal patterns of grassland dynamics using time-series MODIS NDVI with climate and stocking data, Remote Sensing of Environment, 2013, Vol. 138, pp. 232–244, DOI: 10.1016/j.rse.2013.07.020.
  38. Liang L., Wenpeng D., Huimin Y., Lin Z., Yu D., Spatio-Temporal Patterns of Vegetation Change in Kazakhstan from 1982 to 2015, J. Resources and Ecology, 2017, Vol. 8, No. 4, pp. 378–384, DOI: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2017.04.009.
  39. Liu W. T., Kogan F. N., Monitoring regional drought using the Vegetation Condition Index, Intern. J. Remote Sensing, 1996, Vol. 17, No. 14, pp. 2761–2782, DOI: 10.1080/01431169608949106.
  40. Loupian E., Burtsev M., Proshin A., Kashnitskii A., Balashov I., Bartalev S., Konstantinova A., Kobets D., Radchenko M., Tolpin V., Uvarov I., Usage Experience and Capabilities of the VEGA-Science System, Remote Sensing, 2022, Vol. 14, No. 1, Art. No. 77, DOI: 10.3390/rs14010077.
  41. Spivak L., Vitkovskaya I., Batyrbayeva M., Terekhov A., Detection of Desertification Zones Using Multiyear Remote Sensing Data, NATO Science for Peace and Security Series C: Environmental Security Use of Satellite and In-Situ Data to Improve Sustainability, Springer, 2010, pp. 235–241.
  42. Yan J., Zhang G., Ling H., Han F., Comparison of time-integrated NDVI and annual maximum NDVI for assessing grassland dynamics, Ecological Indicators, 2022, Vol. 136, Art. No. 108611, DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolind.2022.108611.
  43. Zhang G., Biradar C. M., Xiao X., Dong J., Zhou Y., Qin Y., Zhang Y., Liu F., Ding M., Thomas R., Exacerbated grassland degradation and desertification in Central Asia during 2000–2014, Ecological Applications, 2018, Vol. 28, No. 2, pp. 442–456, DOI: 10.5061/dryad.12bd9.
  44. Zolotokrylin A. N., Titkova T. B., Bazha S. N., Syrtypova S. H. D., Trends in Livestock Numbers and Spectral Properties of the Pasture Surface: Case Study of the Middle Gobi Aimag of Mongolia, Arid Ecosystems, 2018, Vol. 8, No. 3, pp. 153–160. DOI: 10.1134/S2079096118030095.