Gully erosion susceptibility considering spatiotemporal environmental variables: Midwest U.S. region

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Study region: The study was tested in Jefferson County in Illinois, USA, whose land use is a typical representation of row crop cultivation in the Midwestern USA. Study focus: This study aimed to predict the gully erosion susceptibility in agricultural land using remote sensed environmental data (topographic, pedologic, land cover, precipitation, and vegetation development) considering their spatio-temporal variability in a modeling framework based on the maximum entropy model MaxEnt. The methodology thoroughly evaluated each environmental factor contributing to gully erosion prediction and used a set of rules based on accuracy, transferability, and efficiency to evaluate the model performance. New Hydrological Insights for the Region: This study developed a data-driven modeling framework that can be applied across other regions. The modeling framework indicates that fifteen factors were the most relevant for developing the gully erosion susceptibility map, where 7.4% of the agricultural land in the study area was found at elevated risk of developing gully erosion. Slope, land cover, organic matter, seasonal LAI, and maximum daily precipitation were the most contributing environmental factors to the study area. Furthermore, this study identified the importance of high temporal resolution in varying seasonal factors (i.e., leaf area index and precipitation) to improve model predictability compared to annual temporal discretization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101196
JournalJournal of Hydrology: Regional Studies
StatePublished - Oct 2022


  • Gully erosion
  • Gully erosion susceptibility mapping
  • LiDAR
  • Machine learning
  • MaxEnt model
  • Soil erosion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)


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