Parameter-sparse modification of Fourier methods to analyse the shape of closed contours with application to otolith outlines
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionMarine and Freshwater Research 2016, 67(7):1049-1058 10.1071/MF15087
Elliptical Fourier descriptors (EFDs) have been used extensively in shape analysis of closed contours and have a range of marine applications, such as automatic identification of fish species and discrimination between fish stocks based on EFDs of otolith contours. A recent method (the ‘MIRR’ method) transforms the two-dimensional contour to a one-dimensional function by mirroring (reflecting) the lower half of the contour around a vertical axis at the right end of the contour. MIRR then applies the fast Fourier transform (FFT) to the vertical contour points corresponding to equidistant coordinate values along the horizontal axis. MIRR has the advantage of reducing the number of Fourier coefficients to two coefficients per frequency component compared with four EFDs. However, both Fourier methods require several frequency components to reproduce a pure ellipse properly. This paper shows how the methods can be easily modified so that a virtually perfect reproduction of a pure ellipse is obtained with only one frequency component. In addition, real otolith examples for cod (Gadus morhua) and Greenland halibut (Reinhardtius hippoglossoides) are used to demonstrate that the modified methods give better approximations to the large-scale shape of the original contour with fewer coefficients than the traditional Fourier methods, with negligible additional computing time.