Integrated remote sensing and field-based approach to assess the temporal evolution and future projection of meanders: A case study on River Manu in North-Eastern India

PLoS One. 2022 Jul 20;17(7):e0271190. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0271190. eCollection 2022.


A common phenomenon associated with alluvial rivers is their meander evolution, eventually forming cutoffs. Point bar deposits and ox-bow lakes are the products of lateral bend migration and meander cutoff. The present study focuses on identifying the meanders of River Manu and their cutoffs. Moreover, this study compares the temporal evolution and predicts the progress of selected meanders of River Manu. In the present research, the Survey of India topographical map, satellite imagery, and geographic information system (GIS) technique were used to examine the evolution of the Manu River meander. Subsequently, a field visit was done to the selected cutoffs and meanders of River Manu to ascertain the present status and collect data. It has been observed that many cutoffs have undergone temporal changes, and their sizes have decreased. Some have become dried or converted to agricultural fields. The width of River Manu has decreased in all the selected bends from 1932 to 2017. The sinuosity index has changed from 2.04 (1932) to 1.90 (2017), and the length of the river has decreased by 7 km in 85 years (1932-2017). The decrease in length is evident from lowering the number of meanders. Uniformity coefficient and coefficient of curvature of the bank soil samples were calculated, indicating that the soil is poorly graded and falls under the cohesionless category. Based on cross-section analysis, sediment discharge, grain-size analysis of the bank material, channel planform change, and radius of curvature, it can be stated that almost all the selected bends have the probability of future cutoff. The highest probabilities were observed in bend 3 (Jalai) and bend 4 (Chhontail). This work is aimed to provide planners with decisions regarding the construction of roads and bridges in areas that show the huge dynamicity of river meandering.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Geographic Information Systems
  • India
  • Remote Sensing Technology*
  • Rivers*
  • Soil


  • Soil

Grants and funding

This research work is supported by the Asia Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN) under Collaborative Regional Research Programme (CRRP) with project reference number CRRP2019-01MY-Kumar.