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High dimensional inputs coupled with scarcity of labeled data are among the greatest challenges for classification of hyperspectral data. These problems are exacerbated if the number of classes is large. High dimensional output classes can often be handled effectively by decomposition into multiple two-(meta)class problems, where each sub-problem is solved using a suitable binary classifier, and outputs of this collection of classifiers are combined in a suitable manner to obtain the answer to the original multi-class problem. This approach is taken by the binary hierarchical classifier (BHC). The advantages of the BHC for output decomposition can be further exploited for hyperspectral data analysis by integrating a feature selection methodology with the classifier. Building upon the previously developed best bases BHC algorithm with greedy feature selection, a new method is developed that selects a subset of band groups within metaclasses using reactive tabu search. Experimental results obtained from analysis of Hyperion data acquired over the Okavango Delta in Botswana are superior to those of the greedy feature selection approach and more robust than either the original BHC or the BHC with greedy feature selection.