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  Subjects -> FORESTS AND FORESTRY (Total: 111 journals)
    - FORESTS AND FORESTRY (110 journals)
    - LUMBER AND WOOD (1 journals)

FORESTS AND FORESTRY (110 journals)                     

Showing 1 - 12 of 12 Journals sorted alphabetically
Acta Silvatica et Lignaria Hungarica     Open Access  
Advance in Forestry Research     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Advances in Forestry Letters     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Advances in Forestry Science     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Agrociencia     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Agroforestry Systems     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 19)
Annals of Forest Research     Open Access  
Annals of Forest Science     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4)
Annals of Silvicultural Research     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Appita Journal: Journal of the Technical Association of the Australian and New Zealand Pulp and Paper Industry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 8)
Arboricultural Journal : The International Journal of Urban Forestry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 7)
Arboriculture and Urban Forestry     Partially Free   (Followers: 7)
Australian Forest Grower     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Australian Forestry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Balduinia     Open Access  
Banko Janakari     Open Access  
Bosque     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Bulletin of University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine Cluj-Napoca. Horticulture     Open Access  
Canadian Journal of Forest Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 26)
Canadian Journal of Plant Science     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14)
Ciência Florestal     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Ciencia forestal en México     Open Access  
Colombia Forestal     Open Access  
Current Forestry Reports     Hybrid Journal  
Dissertationes Forestales     Open Access  
East African Agricultural and Forestry Journal     Hybrid Journal  
European Journal of Forest Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
Expert Opinion on Environmental Biology     Hybrid Journal  
Floresta e Ambiente     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Folia Forestalia Polonica     Open Access  
Forest Ecology and Management     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 52)
Forest Ecosystems     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Forest Pathology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Forest Phytophthoras     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Forest Policy and Economics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 23)
Forest Research Papers     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Forest Science     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Forest Science and Practice     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Forest Science and Technology     Partially Free   (Followers: 1)
Forest Systems     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Forest@ : Journal of Silviculture and Forest Ecology     Open Access  
Foresta Veracruzana     Open Access  
Forestry Chronicle     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10)
Forestry Letters     Open Access  
Forestry Studies : Metsanduslikud Uurimused     Open Access  
Forestry: An International Journal of Forest Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 16)
Forests     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Forests, Trees and Livelihoods     Partially Free   (Followers: 5)
Ghana Journal of Forestry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Holzforschung     Hybrid Journal  
iForest : Biogeosciences and Forestry     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Indonesian Journal of Forestry Research     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
INNOTEC : Revista del Laboratorio Tecnológico del Uruguay     Open Access  
International Forestry Review     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7)
International Journal of Agriculture and Forestry     Open Access   (Followers: 8)
International Journal of Forest Engineering     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
International Journal of Forestry Research     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Irish Journal of Agricultural and Food Research     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Journal of Agriculture, Forestry and the Social Sciences     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Journal of Biodiversity Management & Forestry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Journal of Environmental Extension     Full-text available via subscription  
Journal of Forest and Livelihood     Open Access  
Journal of Forest Economics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 6)
Journal of Forest Products and Industries     Open Access  
Journal of Forest Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Journal of Forestry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14)
Journal of Forestry Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
Journal of Horticulture and Forestry     Open Access   (Followers: 5)
Journal of Natural Resources Policy Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 13)
Journal of Research in Forestry, Wildlife and Environment     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Journal of Sustainable Forestry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 7)
Journal of the Faculty of Forestry Istanbul University     Open Access  
Journal of Tropical Forestry and Environment     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Journal of Wood Chemistry and Technology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 7)
Journal of Wood Science     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Jurnal Ilmu Kehutanan     Open Access  
Jurnal Manajemen Hutan Tropika     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Jurnal Penelitian Kehutanan Wallacea     Open Access  
La Calera     Open Access  
Landscapes     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 18)
Lesnícky časopis     Open Access  
Maderas. Ciencia y tecnología     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Mathematical and Computational Forestry & Natural-Resource Sciences     Free  
Natural Areas Journal     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12)
New Forests     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
New Zealand Journal of Forestry Science     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Open Journal of Forestry     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Plant Science Bulletin     Free   (Followers: 8)
Quebracho. Revista de Ciencias Forestales     Open Access  
Research Journal of Forestry     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Revista Árvore     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Revista Chapingo. Serie Ciencias Forestales y del Ambiente     Open Access  
Revista de Agricultura Neotropical     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Revista Ecologia e Nutrição Florestal - ENFLO     Open Access  
Revista Verde de Agroecologia e Desenvolvimento Sustentável     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Revue forestière française     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Rural Sustainability Research     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Rwanda Journal     Full-text available via subscription  
Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4)
Science, Technology and Arts Research Journal     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Silva Lusitana     Open Access  
Small-scale Forestry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Southern African Forestry Journal     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Southern Forests : a Journal of Forest Science     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
Tanzania Journal of Forestry and Nature Conservation     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Trees     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
Urban Forestry & Urban Greening     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9)
Veld & Flora     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Wood and Fiber Science     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)


Journal Cover Forests
  [SJR: 0.63]   [H-I: 16]   [4 followers]  Follow
  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
   ISSN (Print) 1999-4907
   Published by MDPI Homepage  [151 journals]
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 177: Drought Stress Reaction of Growth and Δ13C in
           Tree Rings of European Beech and Norway Spruce in Monospecific Versus
           Mixed Stands Along a Precipitation Gradient

    • Authors: Cynthia Schäfer, Thorsten Grams, Thomas Rötzer, Aline Feldermann, Hans Pretzsch
      First page: 177
      Abstract: Tree rings include retrospective information about the relationship between climate and growth, making it possible to predict growth reaction under changing climate. Previous studies examined species-specific reactions under different environmental conditions from the perspective of tree ring growth and 13C discrimination (Δ13C). This approach is extended to monospecific versus mixed stands in the present paper. We investigated the resistance and resilience of Norway spruce (Picea abies [L.] Karst) and European beech (Fagus sylvatica [L.]) in response to the drought event in 2003. The study was carried out along a precipitation gradient in southern Germany. Responses of basal area increment (BAI) and Δ13C were correlated with a Climate-Vegetation-Productivity-Index (CVPI). The species showed different strategies for coping with drought stress. During the summer drought of 2003, the BAI of spruces reveal a lower resistance to drought on dry sites than those of beech. For beech, we found an increasing resistance in BAI and Δ13C from dry to moist sites. In mixture with spruce, beech had higher resistance and resilience for Δ13C with increasing site moisture. The combination of Δ13C and tree ring growth proxies improves our knowledge of species-specific and mixture-specific reactions to drought for sites with different moisture conditions.
      PubDate: 2017-05-23
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060177
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 178: Soil Biology Research across Latitude,
           Elevation and Disturbance Gradients: A Review of Forest Studies from
           Puerto Rico during the Past 25 Years

    • Authors: Grizelle González, D. Lodge
      First page: 178
      Abstract: Progress in understanding changes in soil biology in response to latitude, elevation and disturbance gradients has generally lagged behind studies of above-ground plants and animals owing to methodological constraints and high diversity and complexity of interactions in below-ground food webs. New methods have opened research opportunities in below-ground systems, leading to a rapid increase in studies of below-ground organisms and processes. Here, we summarize results of forest soil biology research over the past 25 years in Puerto Rico as part of a 75th Anniversary Symposium on research of the USDA Forest Service International Institute of Tropical Forestry. These results are presented in the context of changes in soil and forest floor biota across latitudinal, elevation and disturbance gradients. Invertebrate detritivores in these tropical forests exerted a stronger influence on leaf decomposition than in cold temperate forests using a common substrate. Small changes in arthropods brought about using different litterbag mesh sizes induced larger changes in leaf litter mass loss and nutrient mineralization. Fungi and bacteria in litter and soil of wet forests were surprisingly sensitive to drying, leading to changes in nutrient cycling. Tropical fungi also showed sensitivity to environmental fluctuations and gradients as fungal phylotype composition in soil had a high turnover along an elevation gradient in Puerto Rico. Globally, tropical soil fungi had smaller geographic ranges than temperate fungi. Invertebrate activity accelerates decomposition of woody debris, especially in lowland dry forest, but invertebrates are also important in early stages of log decomposition in middle elevation wet forests. Large deposits of scoltine bark beetle frass from freshly fallen logs coincide with nutrient immobilization by soil microbial biomass and a relatively low density of tree roots in soil under newly fallen logs. Tree roots shifted their foraging locations seasonally in relation to decaying logs. Native earthworms were sensitive to disturbance and were absent from tree plantations, whereas introduced earthworms were found across elevation and disturbance gradients.
      PubDate: 2017-05-24
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060178
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 179: Fire Behavior Simulation from Global Fuel and
           Climatic Information

    • Authors: M. Pettinari, Emilio Chuvieco
      First page: 179
      Abstract: Large-scale fire danger assessment has become increasingly relevant in the past few years, and is usually based on weather information. Still, fuel characteristics also play an important role in fire behavior. This study presents a fire behavior simulation based on a global fuelbed dataset and climatic and topographic information. The simulation was executed using the Fuel Characteristic Classification System (FCCS). The climatic information covered the period 1980–2010, and daily weather parameters were used to calculate the mean monthly fuel moisture content (FMC) and wind speed for the early afternoon period. Also, as the most severe fires occur with extreme environmental conditions, a worst-case scenario was created from the 30 days of each month with the lowest FMC values for the 1980–2010 period. The FMC and wind speed information was grouped into classes, and FCCS was used to simulate the reaction intensity, rate of spread and flame length of the fuelbeds for the average and worst-case monthly conditions. Outputs of the simulations were mapped at global scale, showing the variations in surface fire behavior throughout the year, both due to climatic conditions and fuel characteristics. The surface fire behavior parameters identified the fuels and environmental conditions that produced more severe fire events, as well as those regions where high fire danger only occurs in extreme climatic conditions. The most severe fire events were found in grasslands and shrublands in tropical dry biomes, and corresponding with the worst-case scenario environmental conditions. Also, the results showed the importance of including detailed fuel information into fire danger assessment systems, as the same weather and topographic conditions may have different danger rates, depending on fuel characteristics.
      PubDate: 2017-05-24
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060179
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 180: Spatial Modelling of Fire Drivers in
           Urban-Forest Ecosystems in China

    • Authors: Futao Guo, Zhangwen Su, Mulualem Tigabu, Xiajie Yang, Fangfang Lin, Huiling Liang, Guangyu Wang
      First page: 180
      Abstract: Fires in urban-forest ecosystems (UFEs) are frequent with complex causes, posing a serious hazard to human lives and infrastructure. Thus, quantifying wildfire risks in UFEs and their spatial pattern is quintessential to develop appropriate fire management strategies. The aim of this study was to explore spatial (geographically weighted logistic regression, GWLR) versus non-spatial (logistic regression, LR) modelling approaches to determine the relationship between forest fire occurrence and driving factors in Yichun, a typical urban-forest ecosystem in China. As drivers of fire, 13 factors related to topographic, vegetation, infrastructure, meteorological and socio-economy were considered and regressed against fire occurrence data from 1980 to 2010. Results demonstrate the superiority of GWLR models over LR in terms of prediction accuracy, goodness of fit and model residuals. The GWLR model further captured the spatial variability of driving factors over a broad study area, and the fire likelihood maps identified areas with different zones of fire risk in the study area. In conclusion, the study demonstrates quantitatively and spatially the importance of accounting for local variation in drivers of fires, thereby improving fire management and prevention strategies. The findings also contribute to the emerged field of fire management and fire risk assessment in UFEs.
      PubDate: 2017-05-24
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060180
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 181: Tree Species Site Suitability as a Combination
           of Occurrence Probability and Growth and Derivation of Priority Regions
           for Climate Change Adaptation

    • Authors: Ulrike Märkel, Klara Dolos
      First page: 181
      Abstract: Two aspects of site suitability were combined, namely species occurrence probability and tree growth as proxies for risk and productivity, aiming to improve climate impact assessments for forests. This measure was used to identify priority regions for climate change adaptation under consideration of current stands. The six most frequent tree species according to German national forest inventory data were used considering repeated measurements. Species distribution and growth models were calculated and combined into one measure. To identify priority regions regarding current forests, we aggregated species-specific negative development of site suitability for stands where a tree species actually occurred. Suitability under climate change increased or remained unchanged for current stands of silver fir, pedunculate oak and sessile oak. European beech and Scots pine showed large area shares with negative changes, but also areas with positive changes in site suitability. For Norway spruce, suitability decreased strongly. Priority regions were concentrated in the federal states Rhineland-Palatinate, Hesse, Baden-Württemberg, Thuringia, Lower Saxony, and Saxony-Anhalt. Certainly, the workflow contained several steps, at which decisions had to be made. Although this work did not resolve all issues of site suitability modeling for climate impact on forests, it provided a more comprehensive view on tree species site suitability in biogeographical modeling.
      PubDate: 2017-05-24
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060181
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 182: Substrate Chemistry and Rainfall Regime
           Regulate Elemental Composition of Tree Leaves in Karst Forests

    • Authors: Ernesto Medina, Elvira Cuevas, Ariel Lugo
      First page: 182
      Abstract: Forests on calcareous substrates constitute a large fraction of the vegetation in Puerto Rico. Plant growth on these substrates may be affected by nutrient deficiencies, mainly P and Fe, resulting from high pH and formation of insoluble compounds of these elements. The occurrence of these forests in humid and dry areas provides an opportunity to compare nutrient relations, water use efficiency, and N dynamics, using biogeochemical parameters. We selected sites under humid climate in the north, and dry climate in the southwest of Puerto Rico. Adult, healthy leaves of species with high importance values were collected at each site and analyzed for their elemental composition and the natural abundance of C and N isotopes. Calcium was the dominant cation in leaf tissues, explaining over 70% of the ash content variation, and Al and Ca concentration were positively correlated, excepting only two Al-accumulating species. Karst vegetation consistently showed high N/P ratios comparable to forests on P-poor soils. Dry karst sites had significantly higher δ13C and δ15N ratios. We conclude that forests on karst are mainly limited by P availability, and that mechanisms of nutrient uptake in the rhizosphere lead to linear correlations in the uptake of Ca and Al. Isotope ratios indicate higher water use efficiency, and predominant denitrification in dry karst forest sites.
      PubDate: 2017-05-25
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060182
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 183: Characteristics of Fine Roots of Pinus
           massoniana in the Three Gorges Reservoir Area, China

    • Authors: Yafei Shen, Na Wang, Ruimei Cheng, Wenfa Xiao, Shao Yang, Yan Guo, Lei Lei, Lixiong Zeng, Xiaorong Wang
      First page: 183
      Abstract: Several studies have focused on fine roots characteristics because they provide a major pathway for nutrient cycling and energy flow in forest ecosystems. However, few studies have evaluated changes in fine root characteristics according to their diameter. Pinus massoniana forests are the main vegetative component in the Three Gorges Reservoir area and play an important role in providing forest resources and ecological services. Pinus massoniana fine roots were sorted into 0–0.5, 0.5–1, and 1–2 mm diameter classes, and their fine root standing biomass (FRB), necromass, annual production and decomposition rates were determined and correlated with soil characteristics. These fine roots in three diameter classes significantly differed in their initial carbon (C), C/N ratio, FRB, necromass, annual C and N production and decomposition rate. The production and decomposition of these different diameter classes varied significantly with soil variables including soil temperature, moisture, calcium and ammonium concentration but the strength of these interactions varied dependent on diameter class. The very fine roots had a faster decomposition ratio than larger fine roots due to the lower N content, higher C/N ratio and higher sensitivity to soil environmental factors. These results clearly indicate heterogeneity among fine roots of different diameters, and these variations should be taken into account when studying fine root characteristics and their role in the C cycle.
      PubDate: 2017-05-25
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060183
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 184: Terrestrial Laser Scanning for Forest
           Inventories—Tree Diameter Distribution and Scanner Location Impact on

    • Authors: Meinrad Abegg, Daniel Kükenbrink, Jürgen Zell, Michael Schaepman, Felix Morsdorf
      First page: 184
      Abstract: The rapid development of portable terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) devices in recent years has led to increased attention to their applicability for forest inventories, especially where direct measurements are very expensive or nearly impossible. However, in terms of precision and reproducibility, there are still some pending questions. In this study, we investigate the influence of stand parameters on the TLS-related visibility in forest plots. We derived 2740 stand parameters from Swiss national forest inventory sample plots. Based on these parameters, we defined virtual scenes of the forest plots with the software “Blender”. Using Blender’s ray-tracing features, we assessed the 3D coverage in a cubic space and 2D visibility properties for each of the virtual plots with different scanner placement schemes. We provide a formula to calculate the maximum number of possible hits for any object size at any distance from a scanner with any resolution. Additionally, we show that the Weibull scale parameter describing a stand, in addition to the number of trees and the mean diameter of the dominant 100 trees per hectare, has a significant and relevant influence on the visibility of the sample plot. Furthermore, we show the effectiveness and the efficiency of 40 scanner location patterns. These experiments demonstrate that intuitively distributing scanner locations evenly within the sample plot, with similar distances between locations and from the edge of the sample plot, provides the best overall visibility of the stand.
      PubDate: 2017-05-26
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060184
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 185: Seed Origin and Protection Are Important
           Factors Affecting Post-Fire Initial Recruitment in Pine Forest Areas

    • Authors: Manuel Lucas-Borja, David Candel-Pérez, Thierry Onkelinx, Peter Fule, Daniel Moya, Jorge de las Heras, Pedro Tíscar
      First page: 185
      Abstract: Initial seedling recruitment is one of the most critical stages for plants in the Mediterranean basin. Moreover, wildfires and post-fire environmental conditions might deteriorate regeneration success, which can lead to problems for sustainable forest restoration and forest persistence. On this context, different seed origins and pine species may be better adapted to new environmental conditions remaining after forest fires and seed protection might modulate seedling initial recruitment. This study evaluates the effects of seed origin (Pinus nigra Arn. subsp. salzmannii Dunal (Franco) from lowland, midland and upland distribution areas), pine species (Pinus pinaster Aiton, Pinus sylvestris L. and Pinus nigra Arn. subsp. salzmannii Dunal (Franco)) and seed protection on seed emergence and early seedling survival after forest fires in the Cuenca Mountains. In addition, a greenhouse experiment was set up under controlled conditions to test seedling performance and to compare initial seedling growth of different P. nigra seed origins growing in field and greenhouse conditions. Results showed that wetter spring seasons and P. nigra seed origins from midland and upland distribution growing in their natural habitat distribution perform better that P. sylvestris and P. pinaster. Seed protection is an important factor modulating the above-mentioned trend. P. nigra seeds growing at the greenhouse experiment showed differences in growth for extreme (upland or lowland) P. nigra distribution.
      PubDate: 2017-05-27
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060185
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 186: Characterizing Habitat Elements and Their
           Distribution over Several Spatial Scales: The Case of the Fisher

    • Authors: Matthew Niblett, Richard Church, Stuart Sweeney, Klaus Barber
      First page: 186
      Abstract: In past studies of the fisher (Pekania pennanti) most researchers have concluded that fisher habitat must consist of mostly mature to late-seral forest with few, if any, openings. Without doubt, certain elements found in mature to late-seral forests are required by females to successfully rear their young, but some recent work casts doubt on the extent that a continuous canopy of tree coverage and a preponderance of older stands are necessary as long as certain components exist. This paper explores this issue with an attempt to better characterize essential elements of habitat for the female fisher. This characterization is based upon fine-scale inventory plot data that is analyzed across several spatial scales that represent a small neighborhood about den sites, the forest of the 75% kernel density estimate for female home ranges, and the forested region as a whole. We present results of a test of significance in comparing habitat elements across these three scales. Our findings suggest that certain habitat elements typically found in mature to late seral forests must be present at a certain fraction of the landscape for the fisher. The approach described here may be of considerable value in developing guidelines for conservation agreements.
      PubDate: 2017-05-28
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060186
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 187: Living and Dead Aboveground Biomass in
           Mediterranean Forests: Evidence of Old-Growth Traits in a Quercus
           pubescens Willd. s.l. Stand

    • Authors: Emilio Badalamenti, Tommaso La Mantia, Giovanni La Mantia, Antonino Cairone, Donato La Mela Veca
      First page: 187
      Abstract: For a long time, human impact has deeply simplified most of the forest ecosystems of the Mediterranean Basin. Here, forests have seldom had the chance to naturally develop a complex and multilayered structure, to host large and old trees and rich biological communities, approaching old-growth conditions. Also for this reason, limited information is currently available about Mediterranean old-growth forests, particularly with regard to deadwood. The main aim of this work is to help fill this critical knowledge gap. In Sicily (Italy), we identified a Quercus pubescens forest that seemed to show some typical old-growth features. Total living volume (360 m3 ha−1) and basal area (34 m2 ha−1) were, respectively, about 6 and 3 times higher than the averages recorded in the regional forest inventory for this forest type. Deadwood was particularly abundant, exceeding the threshold of 30 m3 ha−1, mainly represented by lying dead elements. Dead to live wood ratio reached 9%, a value close to the threshold of 10% considered for Mediterranean old-growth forests. As the investigated forest showed some typical old-growth traits, it deserves to be fully protected and could be a permanent monitoring area for studying deadwood and stand dynamics in mature Mediterranean stands.
      PubDate: 2017-05-30
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060187
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 188: Post-Fire Restoration Plan for Sustainable
           Forest Management in South Korea

    • Authors: Soung-Ryoul Ryu, Hyung-Tae Choi, Joo-Hoon Lim, Im-Kyun Lee, Young-Sang Ahn
      First page: 188
      Abstract: This review was to determine a standard post-fire restoration strategy for use in South Korea according to the magnitude of the damage and the condition of the affected site. The government has strongly enforced reforestation in deforested areas as well as fire prevention and suppression since the 1960s. These efforts have successfully recovered dense even-aged forests over the last five decades. However, high fuel loading and the homogeneous structure have made forests vulnerable to large fires. In recent years, large forest fires have occurred in the eastern coastal region of Korea. Forest fires can significantly influence the economic and social activities of the residents of such affected forest regions. Burned areas may require urgent and long-term restoration strategies, depending on the condition of the affected site. Erosion control is the most important component of an urgent restoration and should be completed before a rainy season to prevent secondary damage such as landslides and sediment runoff in burned areas. Long-term restoration is necessary to renew forest functions such as timber production, water conservation, ecosystem conservation, and recreation for residents. Sound restoration for burned areas is critical for restoring healthy ecological functions of forests and providing economic incentives to local residents.
      PubDate: 2017-05-30
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060188
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 189: Visualizing the Forest in a Boreal Forest
           Landscape—The Perspective of Swedish Municipal Comprehensive Planning

    • Authors: Camilla Thellbro, Olof Stjernström, Per Sandström, Gun Lidestav
      First page: 189
      Abstract: At the international policy level, there is a clear link between access to information about forests and the work towards sustainable land use. However, involving forests in planning for sustainable development (SuD) at the Swedish local level, by means of municipal comprehensive planning (MCP), is complicated by sector structure and legislation. Currently, there is a gap or hole in the MCP process when it comes to use and access to knowledge about forest conditions and forest land use. This hole limits the possibilities to formulate well-informed municipal visions and goals for sustainable forest land use as well as for overall SuD. Here we introduce an approach for compilation and presentation of geographic information to increase the preconditions for integrating forest information into Swedish MCP. We produce information about forest ownership patterns and forest conditions in terms of age and significant ecological and social values in forests for a case study municipality. We conclude that it is possible to effectively compile geographic and forest-related information to fill the hole in the municipal land use map. Through our approach, MCP could be strengthened as a tool for overall land use planning and hence as a base in SuD planning.
      PubDate: 2017-05-31
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060189
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 190: Mangrove Carbon Stocks and Ecosystem Cover
           Dynamics in Southwest Madagascar and the Implications for Local Management

    • Authors: Lisa Benson, Leah Glass, Trevor Jones, Lalao Ravaoarinorotsihoarana, Cicelin Rakotomahazo
      First page: 190
      Abstract: Of the numerous ecosystem services mangroves provide, carbon storage is gaining particular attention for its potential role in climate change mitigation strategies. Madagascar contains 2% of the world’s mangroves, over 20% of which is estimated to have been deforested through charcoal production, timber extraction and agricultural development. This study presents a carbon stock assessment of the mangroves in Helodrano Fagnemotse in southwest Madagascar alongside an analysis of mangrove land-cover change from 2002 to 2014. Similar to other mangrove ecosystems in East Africa, higher stature, closed-canopy mangroves in southwest Madagascar were estimated to contain 454.92 (±26.58) Mg·C·ha−1. Although the mangrove extent in this area is relatively small (1500 ha), these mangroves are of critical importance to local communities and anthropogenic pressures on coastal resources in the area are increasing. This was evident in both field observations and remote sensing analysis, which indicated an overall net loss of 3.18% between 2002 and 2014. Further dynamics analysis highlighted widespread transitions of dense, higher stature mangroves to more sparse mangrove areas indicating extensive degradation. Harnessing the value that the carbon stored within these mangroves holds on the voluntary carbon market could generate revenue to support and incentivise locally-led sustainable mangrove management, improve livelihoods and alleviate anthropogenic pressures.
      PubDate: 2017-05-31
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060190
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 191: Plant Debris and Its Contribution to Ecosystem
           Carbon Storage in Successional Larix gmelinii Forests in Northeastern

    • Authors: Jianxiao Zhu, Xuli Zhou, Wenjing Fang, Xinyu Xiong, Biao Zhu, Chengjun Ji, Jingyun Fang
      First page: 191
      Abstract: Plant debris, including woody debris and litter, is an essential but frequently overlooked component of carbon (C) storage in forest ecosystems. Here, we examined the C storage of plant debris and its contribution to total ecosystem C storage in an age sequence of six larch (Larix gmelinii) forest stands (15, 36, 45, 54, 65, and 138 years old) in northeastern China. The plant debris C storage increased from 6.0 ± 0.5 Mg·C·ha−1 in the 15-year-old stand to a maximum of 9.3 ± 1.8 Mg·C·ha−1 in the 138-year-old stand. The C storage of woody debris increased during stand development in a sigmoidal pattern, increasing from 0.7 ± 0.2 Mg·C·ha−1 in the 15-year-old stand to 4.7 ± 1.3 Mg·C·ha−1 in the 138-year-old stand. However, the C storage of litter (4.6−5.4 Mg·C·ha−1) did not vary with stand age in this larch chronosequence. In addition, the ratio of woody debris to live tree biomass C storage was relatively stable across stands (approximately 3.3%). These results highlight the importance of considering successional development and stand characteristics in assessing changes of plant debris and total ecosystem C storage in the larch forest ecosystem
      PubDate: 2017-05-31
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060191
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 192: Dual-Filter Estimation for Rotating-Panel
           Sample Designs

    • Authors: Francis Roesch
      First page: 192
      Abstract: Dual-filter estimators are described and tested for use in the annual estimation for national forest inventories. The dual-filter approach involves the use of a moving widow estimator in the first pass, which is used as input to Theil’s mixed estimator in the second pass. The moving window and dual-filter estimators are tested along with two other estimators in a sampling simulation of 152 simulated populations, which were developed from data collected in 38 states and Puerto Rico by the Forest Inventory and Analysis Program of the USDA Forest Service. The dual-filter estimators are shown to almost always provide some reduction in mean squared error (MSE) relative to the first pass moving window estimators.
      PubDate: 2017-06-02
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060192
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 193: Drivers of Plot-Scale Variability of CH4
           Consumption in a Well-Aerated Pine Forest Soil

    • Authors: Martin Maier, Sinikka Paulus, Clara Nicolai, Kenton Stutz, Philipp Nauer
      First page: 193
      Abstract: While differences in greenhouse gas (GHG) fluxes between ecosystems can be explained to a certain degree, variability of the same at the plot scale is still challenging. We investigated the spatial variability in soil-atmosphere fluxes of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) to find out what drives spatial variability on the plot scale. Measurements were carried out in a Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) forest in a former floodplain on a 250 m2 plot, divided in homogenous strata of vegetation and soil texture. Soil gas fluxes were measured consecutively at 60 points along transects to cover the spatial variability. One permanent chamber was measured repeatedly to monitor temporal changes to soil gas fluxes. The observed patterns at this control chamber were used to standardize the gas fluxes to disentangle temporal variability from the spatial variability of measured GHG fluxes. Concurrent measurements of soil gas diffusivity allowed deriving in situ methanotrophic activity from the CH4 flux measurements. The soil emitted CO2 and consumed CH4 and N2O. Significantly different fluxes of CH4 and CO2 were found for the different soil-vegetation strata, but not for N2O. Soil CH4 consumption increased with soil gas diffusivity within similar strata supporting the hypothesis that CH4 consumption by soils is limited by the supply with atmospheric CH4. Methane consumption in the vegetation strata with dominant silty texture was higher at a given soil gas diffusivity than in the strata with sandy texture. The same pattern was observed for methanotrophic activity, indicating better habitats for methantrophs in silt. Methane consumption increased with soil respiration in all strata. Similarly, methanotrophic activity increased with soil respiration when the individual measurement locations were categorized into silt and sand based on the dominant soil texture, irrespective of the vegetation stratum. Thus, we suggest the rhizosphere and decomposing organic litter might represent or facilitate a preferred habitat for methanotrophic microbes, since rhizosphere and decomposing organic are the source of most of the soil respiration.
      PubDate: 2017-06-03
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060193
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 194: Preserving Ecosystem Services on Indigenous
           Territory through Restoration and Management of a Cultural Keystone

    • Authors: Yadav Uprety, Hugo Asselin, Yves Bergeron
      First page: 194
      Abstract: Eastern white pine (Pinus strobus L.) is a cultural keystone tree species in the forests of eastern North America, providing numerous ecosystem services to Indigenous people. White pine abundance in the landscape has considerably decreased over the last few centuries due to overharvesting, suppression of surface fires, extensive management, and plantation failure. The Kitcisakik Algonquin community of western Quebec is calling for restoration and sustainable management of white pine on its ancestral territory, to ensure provision of associated ecosystem services. We present five white pine restoration and management scenarios taking into account community needs and ecological types: (1) natural regeneration of scattered white pines to produce individuals of different sizes and ages used as medicinal plants; (2) protection of supercanopy white pines used as landmarks and for providing habitat for flagship wildlife species, and younger individuals left as regeneration and future canopy trees; (3) the uniform shelterwood system to create white pine-dominated stands that provide habitat for flagship wildlife species and support cultural activities; (4) under-canopy plantations to yield mature white pine stands for timber production; (5) mixed plantations to produce forests with aesthetic qualities that provide wildlife habitat and protect biodiversity.
      PubDate: 2017-06-03
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060194
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 195: Separating Trends in Whitebark Pine Radial
           Growth Related to Climate and Mountain Pine Beetle Outbreaks in the
           Northern Rocky Mountains, USA

    • Authors: Saskia van de Gevel, Evan Larson, Henri Grissino-Mayer
      First page: 195
      Abstract: Drought and mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae Hopkins) outbreaks have affected millions of hectares of high-elevation conifer forests in the Northern Rocky Mountains during the past century. Little research has examined the distinction between mountain pine beetle outbreaks and climatic influence on radial growth in endangered whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis Engelm.) ecosystems. We used a new method to explore divergent periods in whitebark pine radial growth after mountain pine beetle outbreaks across six sites in western Montana. We examined a 100-year history of mountain pine beetle outbreaks and climate relationships in whitebark pine radial growth to distinguish whether monthly climate variables or mountain pine outbreaks were the dominant influence on whitebark pine growth during the 20th century. High mortality of whitebark pines was caused by the overlapping effects of previous and current mountain pine beetle outbreaks and white pine blister rust infection. Wet conditions from precipitation and snowpack melt in the previous summer, current spring, and current summer benefit whitebark pine radial growth during the following growing season. Whitebark pine radial growth and climate relationships were strongest in sites less affected by the mountain pine beetle outbreaks or anthropogenic disturbances. Whitebark pine population resiliency should continue to be monitored as more common periods of drought will make whitebark pines more susceptible to mountain pine beetle attack and to white pine blister rust infection.
      PubDate: 2017-06-03
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060195
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 196: Evaluation of a New Temporary Immersion
           Bioreactor System for Micropropagation of Cultivars of Eucalyptus, Birch
           and Fir

    • Authors: Edward Businge, Adelina Trifonova, Carolin Schneider, Philipp Rödel, Ulrika Egertsdotter
      First page: 196
      Abstract: The use of liquid instead of solid culture medium for the micropropagation of plants offers advantages such as better access to medium components and scalability through possible automation of the processes. The objective of this work was to compare a new temporary immersion bioreactor (TIB) to solid medium culture for the micropropagation of a selection of tree species micropropagated for commercial use: Nordmann fir (Abies nordmanniana (Steven) Spach), Eucalyptus (E. grandis x E. urophylla), Downy birch (Betula pubescens Ehrh), and Curly birch (Betula pendula var. carelica). Cultivation of explants in the TIB resulted in a significant increase of multiplication rate and fresh weight of Eucalyptus and B. pendula, but not Betula pubescens. In addition, the fresh weight of embryogenic tissue and the maturation frequency of somatic embryos increased significantly when an embryogenic cell line of A. nordmanniana was cultivated in the TIB compared to solid culture medium. These results demonstrate the potential for scaling up and automating micropropagation by shoot multiplication and somatic embryogenesis in commercial tree species using a temporary immersion bioreactor.
      PubDate: 2017-06-03
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060196
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 197: Land Use Affects the Soil C Sequestration in
           Alpine Environment, NE Italy

    • Authors: Diego Pizzeghello, Ornella Francioso, Giuseppe Concheri, Adele Muscolo, Serenella Nardi
      First page: 197
      Abstract: Soil carbon sequestration is strongly affected by soil properties, climate, and anthropogenic activities. Assessing these drivers is key to understanding the effect of land use on soil organic matter stabilization. We evaluated land use and soil depth influencing patterns of soil organic matter stabilization in three types of soil profiles located under the same pedogenetic matrix and alpine conditions but with different vegetation cover. The stock in soil organic carbon in the mean 0–20 cm layer increased from prairie (31.9 t ha−1) to prairie in natural reforestation (42 t ha−1) to forest (120 t ha−1), corresponding to increments of 1.3-fold prairie, for prairie in natural reforestation, and of 3.8-fold prairie for forest. The forest showed the highest humic carbon (21.7 g kg−1), which was 2.8 times greater than the prairie in natural reforestation and 4 times higher than the prairie. 13C-NMR spectroscopic measurements suggested a different C pattern. The prairie in natural reforestation and the prairie were characterized by a higher content in O,N-alkyl C with respect to the forest. Alkyl C and aromatic C in the prairie in natural reforestation and prairie did not show relevant differences while they decreased with respect to the forest. Carboxyl and phenolic C groups were markedly higher in forest and prairie than prairie in natural reforestation. Alkyl C, carboxyl C, and phenolic C prevailed in the Ah horizons whereas aromatic C and O,N-alkyl C were dominant in the B horizons. Overall, the marked distribution of O,N-alkyl C and alkyl C in humic substances (HS) indicates a low degree of humification. Nevertheless, in forest, the relatively high presence of aromatic C designated HS endowed with a relatively high humification degree. Thus, our results might suggest that in the alpine environment of NE Italy differences in soil organic matter (SOM) stocks and characteristics are affected by land use and anthropic activities.
      PubDate: 2017-06-06
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060197
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 198: Effects of Thinning on Soil Organic Carbon
           Fractions and Soil Properties in Cunninghamia lanceolata Stands in Eastern

    • Authors: Xiangrong Cheng, Mukui Yu, G. Wang
      First page: 198
      Abstract: Soil organic carbon (SOC) fractions, along with soil properties, are greatly affected by forest management. In this study, three thinning treatments: control (conventional management mode), moderate thinning intensity and heavy thinning intensity, were applied in Chinese fir (Cunninghamia lanceolata) plantations in eastern China. The dissolved organic carbon (DOC), soil light fraction organic carbon (LFOC) and heavy fraction organic carbon (HFOC), total SOC, DOC/SOC and LFOC/HFOC were not affected by thinning treatments. In the heavy thinning treatment, soil bulk density decreased, and soil water holding capacity and porosity increased in the topsoil layers (0–10 cm and 10–20 cm). Total nitrogen, hydrolysable nitrogen, and zinc concentrations increased in the topsoil layers (0–20 cm) in the heavy thinning treatment compared to the control treatment, while the available potassium concentration reduced. The moderate thinning treatment had little effect on the soil physical and chemical properties. Moreover, the variation of SOC fractions was strongly correlated to soil physical and chemical properties. These results suggest that thinning has little effect on the total SOC and its fractions in one rotation of Chinese fir tree in eastern China. In contrast, however, results also suggest that thinning has a positive effect on soil quality, to a certain extent.
      PubDate: 2017-06-07
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060198
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 199: Carbon Stocks of Fine Woody Debris in Coppice
           Oak Forests at Different Development Stages

    • Authors: Ender Makineci, Serdar Akburak, Alper Özturna, Doğanay Tolunay
      First page: 199
      Abstract: Dead woody debris is a significant component of the carbon cycle in forest ecosystems. This study was conducted in coppice-originated oak forests to determine carbon stocks of dead woody debris in addition to carbon stocks of different ecosystem compartments from the same area and forests which were formerly elucidated. Weight and carbon stocks of woody debris were determined with recent samplings and compared among development stages (diameter at breast height (DBH, D1.3m)), namely small-diameter forests (SDF) = 0–8 cm, medium diameter forests (MDF) = 8–20 cm, and large-diameter forests (LDF) = 20–36 cm). Total woody debris was collected in samplings; as bilateral diameters of all woody debris parts were less than 10 cm, all woody parts were in the “fine woody debris (FWD)” class. The carbon concentrations of FWD were about 48% for all stages. Mass (0.78–4.92 Mg·ha−1) and carbon stocks (0.38–2.39 Mg·ha−1) of FWD were significantly (p > 0.05) different among development stages. FWD carbon stocks were observed to have significant correlation with D1.3m, age, basal area, and carbon stocks of aboveground biomass (Spearman rank correlation coefficients; 0.757, 0.735, 0.709, and 0.694, respectively). The most important effects on carbon budgets of fine woody debris were determined to be coppice management and intensive utilization. Also, national forestry management, treatments of traditional former coppice, and conversion to high forest were emphasized as having substantial effects.
      PubDate: 2017-06-08
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060199
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 200: Spatial Analysis of a Haloxylon Ammodendron
           Plantation in an Oasis-Desert Ecotone in the Hexi Corridor, Northwestern

    • Authors: Ying Zheng, Wenzhi Zhao, Gefei Zhang
      First page: 200
      Abstract: Haloxylon ammodendron is a commonly used sand-fixing species in the desert area of northwestern China; it has been abundantly planted in areas where annual precipitation is about 120 mm in the Hexi Corridor since the 1970s. Spatial patterns and associations of an H. ammodendron plantation in five stages of community development were analyzed in an oasis-desert ecotone to gain insights into population dynamics over a course of succession. Five 0.3-ha (50 m × 60 m) permanent plots were established in each of five developmental stages; H. ammodendron was classified as seedlings, juvenile and mature trees, and all individuals were measured and stem-mapped. The univariate spatial analysis by the L-function and the bivariate L12-function were used to describe the spatial patterns of all trees and examine the spatial association among trees between different tree size-classes. Results showed that at scales >2 m, the spatial pattern of H. ammodendron shifted from initially clustered to random, and back to clustered; at scales <2 m, a transition from uniform to clustered was observed with stand age. In 5–10-year, 10–20-year and 20–30-year stages, competition between conspecifics may be the dominant factor which influenced plant survival. In 30–40-year and >40-year stages, interactions between conspecifics may be the dominant factor in conditions of tree-size-asymmetric competition, but abiotic stress may be more important in tree-size-symmetric competition. The H. ammodendron plantation experienced highest mortality at the 5–10-year stage as a result of fierce competition for soil water, while with respect to growth, it entered into a relatively stable stage, where the gaps generated due to mortality of adult trees and improved soil conditions provided opportunities for regeneration. In the >40-year stage, the regeneration experienced a decline under enhanced competition for water, and the plantation showed a clustered pattern at all scales due to water stress.
      PubDate: 2017-06-08
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060200
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 201: Effects of Boreal Well Site Reclamation
           Practices on Long-Term Planted Spruce and Deciduous Tree Regeneration

    • Authors: Laurie Frerichs, Edward Bork, Terrance Osko, M. Naeth
      First page: 201
      Abstract: Well site development associated with oil sands exploration is common in boreal mixedwood forests of northern Alberta, Canada, and necessitates reforestation to accommodate other land uses. Little is known about the impact of soil and debris handling strategies during well site construction on long-term forest regeneration. This study addresses the impact of soil disturbance intensity, debris treatment, soil storage, and planting on the reforestation of 33 well sites reclaimed prior to 2006. Data on the survival and growth of planted white spruce (Picea glauca (Moench) Voss) and the regeneration density of deciduous trees, including trembling aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx), are presented from 2014 to 2015. The survival of planted spruce increased from 81% to 88% at well sites with a high relative to low soil disturbance. The total tree densities were lower in most treatments (≤2.69 stems m−2) than those in clear cuts (5.17 stems m−2), with the exception of root salvage areas where clear cuts had greater balsam poplar (Populus balsamifera L.) densities (2.05 stems m−2 vs. <0.71 stems m−2 on all other treatments). Aspen densities were up to five times greater at well sites with low disturbance when compared to those with high disturbance, and this was further aided by shallow mulch at low disturbance sites. Spruce growth did not respond to well site treatments. Aspen growth (diameter and height) remained similar between well site disturbance regimes; aspen exposed to high disturbance underperformed relative to low disturbance well sites and clear cut controls. With high disturbance, progressive soil piling led to increases in the density of aspen and birch (Betula papyrifera Marshall). Few long-term changes in soil were found due to well site development, with a greater soil pH in high disturbance sites compared to low disturbance sites. Overall, these results indicate that the nature of well site construction, including the extent of soil removal, soil piling, and debris treatment, may collectively alter forest re-establishment, with associated implications for forest management.
      PubDate: 2017-06-08
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060201
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 202: Coordination and Determinants of Leaf
           Community Economics Spectrum for Canopy Trees and Shrubs in a Temperate
           Forest in Northeastern China

    • Authors: Feng Jiang, Yanhan Xun, Huiying Cai, Guangze Jin
      First page: 202
      Abstract: Upscaling the leaf economics spectrum (LES) from the species level to community level is an important step to understand how assemblages are constructed based on functional traits and how these coordinated traits for a community respond to the environmental gradients and climate change. In a 9-ha temperate forest dynamics plot located in northeastern China, we collected four LES traits and three other leaf traits from 28 tree species and 13 shrub species. We then related the LES traits at the community level to topographical and soil factors. We observed that the coordination of LES at the community level was stronger than at the species level. Soil nutrients were the primary drivers of distribution of leaf community economics spectrum with acquisition strategy communities in the resource-rich locations. We also observed that different environmental factors affected the distributions of leaf community economics spectrums for trees and shrubs. Our results provided novel evidence for the existence of leaf community economics spectrum in the continental monsoon climate zone. Both abiotic filtering and niche differentiation determined their distributions across different growth forms at the local spatial scale.
      PubDate: 2017-06-09
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060202
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 203: How Cities Think: Knowledge Co-Production for
           Urban Sustainability and Resilience

    • Authors: Tischa Muñoz-Erickson, Clark Miller, Thaddeus Miller
      First page: 203
      Abstract: Understanding and transforming how cities think is a crucial part of developing effective knowledge infrastructures for the Anthropocene. In this article, we review knowledge co-production as a popular approach in environmental and sustainability science communities to the generation of useable knowledge for sustainability and resilience. We present knowledge systems analysis as a conceptual and empirical framework for understanding existing co-production processes as preconditions to the design of new knowledge infrastructures in cities. Knowledge systems are the organizational practices and routines that make, validate, communicate, and apply knowledge. The knowledge systems analysis framework examines both the workings of these practices and routines and their interplay with the visions, values, social relations, and power dynamics embedded in the governance of building sustainable cities. The framework can be useful in uncovering hidden relations and highlighting the societal foundations that shape what is (and what is not) known by cities and how cities can co-produce new knowledge with meaningful sustainability and resilience actions and transformations. We highlight key innovations and design philosophies that we think can advance research and practice on knowledge co-production for urban sustainability and resilience.
      PubDate: 2017-06-10
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060203
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 204: Insights on Forest Structure and Composition
           from Long-Term Research in the Luquillo Mountains

    • Authors: Tamara Heartsill Scalley
      First page: 204
      Abstract: The science of ecology fundamentally aims to understand species and their relation to the environment. At sites where hurricane disturbance is part of the environmental context, permanent forest plots are critical to understand ecological vegetation dynamics through time. An overview of forest structure and species composition from two of the longest continuously measured tropical forest plots is presented. Long-term measurements, 72 years at the leeward site, and 25 years at windward site, of stem density are similar to initial and pre-hurricane values at both sites. For 10 years post-hurricane Hugo (1989), stem density increased at both sites. Following that increase period, stem density has remained at 1400 to 1600 stems/ha in the leeward site, and at 1200 stems/ha in the windward site. The forests had similar basal area values before hurricane Hugo in 1989, but these sites are following different patterns of basal area accumulation. The leeward forest site continues to accumulate and increase basal area with each successive measurement, currently above 50 m2/ha. The windward forest site maintains its basal area values close to an asymptote of 35 m2/ha. Currently, the most abundant species at both sites is the sierra palm. Ordinations to explore variation in tree species composition through time present the leeward site with a trajectory of directional change, while at the windward site, the composition of species seems to be converging to pre-hurricane conditions. The observed differences in forest structure and composition from sites differently affected by hurricane disturbance provide insight into how particular forest characteristics respond at shorter or longer time scales in relation to previous site conditions and intensity of disturbance effects.
      PubDate: 2017-06-10
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060204
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 205: Short Rotations in Forest Plantations
           Accelerate Virulence Evolution in Root-Rot Pathogenic Fungi

    • Authors: Jean-Paul Soularue, Cécile Robin, Marie-Laure Desprez-Loustau, Cyril Dutech
      First page: 205
      Abstract: As disease outbreaks in forest plantations are causing concern worldwide, a clear understanding of the influence of silvicultural practices on the development of epidemics is still lacking. Importantly, silvicultural practices are likely to imultaneously affect epidemiological and evolutionary dynamics of pathogen populations. We propose a genetically explicit and individual-based model of virulence evolution in a root-rot pathogenic fungus spreading across forest landscapes, taking the Armillaria ostoyae–Pinus pinaster pathosystem as eference. We used the model to study the effects of rotation length on the evolution of virulence and the propagation of the fungus within a forest landscape composed of even-aged stands regularly altered by clear-cutting and thinning operations. The life cycle of the fungus modeled combines asexual and sexual reproduction modes, and also includes parasitic and saprotrophic phases. Moreover, the tree usceptibility to the pathogen is primarily determined by the age of the stand. Our simulations indicated that the shortest rotation length accelerated both the evolution of virulence and the development of the epidemics, whatever the genetic variability in the initial fungal population and the asexuality rate of the fungal species.
      PubDate: 2017-06-10
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060205
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 206: Quantification of Phosphorus Exports from a
           Small Forested Headwater-Catchment in the Eastern Ore Mountains, Germany

    • Authors: Stefan Julich, Raphael Benning, Dorit Julich, Karl-Heinz Feger
      First page: 206
      Abstract: Phosphorus (P) export from forest soils is mainly driven by storm events, which induce rapid flow processes by preferential flow bypassing large parts of the soil matrix. However, little is known about the dynamics, magnitude, and driving processes of P exports into surface waters. In this paper, we present the results of a monitoring study in a small forested catchment (21 ha) situated in the low mountain ranges of Saxony, Germany. During the fixed schedule-sampling (weekly to bi-weekly sampling frequency for a three-year period), a mean total-P concentration of 8 μg·L−1 was measured. However, concentrations increased up to 203 μg·L−1 during individual storm flow events. Based on the analyzed concentrations and continuously measured discharge we calculated mean annual export rates of 19 to 44 g·ha−1·a−1 for the weekly sampling frequency with different load calculation methods. If events are included into the annual load calculation, the mean annual export fluxes can be up to 83 g·ha−1·a−1 based on the different load calculation methods. Predictions of total-P export rates based on a sampling strategy which does not consider short-term changes due to factors such as storms will substantially underestimate P exports.
      PubDate: 2017-06-10
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060206
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 207: The Effects of Climate Change on the
           Development of Tree Plantations for Biodiesel Production in China

    • Authors: Guanghui Dai, Jun Yang, Conghong Huang, Caowen Sun, Liming Jia, Luyi Ma
      First page: 207
      Abstract: Biodiesel produced from woody oil plants is a promising form of renewable energy but a combination of tree plantations’ long cultivation time and rapid climate change may put large-scale production at risk. If plantations are located in future-unsuitable places, plantations may fail or yield may be poor, then significant financial, labor, and land resources invested in planting programs will be wasted. Incorporating climate change information into the planning and management of forest-based biodiesel production therefore can increase its chances of success. However, species distribution models, the main tool used to predict the influence of future climate–species distribution modeling, often contain considerable uncertainties. In this study we evaluated how these uncertainties could affect the assessment of climate suitability of the long-term development plans for forest-based biodiesel in China by using Sapindus mukorossi Gaertn as an example. The results showed that only between 59% and 75% of the planned growing areas were projected suitable habitats for the species, depending on the set-up of simulation. Our results showed the necessity for explicitly addressing the uncertainty of species distribution modeling when using it to inform forest-based bioenergy planning. We also recommend the growing area specified in China’s national development plan be modified to lower the risk associated with climate change.
      PubDate: 2017-06-11
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060207
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 208: The Risks Associated with Glyphosate-Based
           Herbicide Use in Planted Forests

    • Authors: Carol Rolando, Brenda Baillie, Dean Thompson, Keith Little
      First page: 208
      Abstract: Glyphosate-based herbicides are the dominant products used internationally for control of vegetation in planted forests. Few international, scientific syntheses on glyphosate, specific to its use in planted forests, are publically available. We provide an international overview of the current use of glyphosate-based herbicides in planted forests and the associated risks. Glyphosate is used infrequently in planted forests and at rates not exceeding 4 kg ha1. It is used within legal label recommendations and applied by trained applicators. While the highest risk of human exposure to glyphosate is during manual operational application, when applied according to label recommendations the risk of exposure to levels that exceed accepted toxicity standards is low. A review of the literature on the direct and indirect risks of operationally applied glyphosate-based herbicides indicated no significant adverse effects to terrestrial and aquatic fauna. While additional research in some areas is required, such as the use of glyphosate-based products in forests outside of North America, and the potential indirect effects of glyphosate stored in sediments, most of the priority questions have been addressed by scientific investigations. Based on the extensive available scientific evidence we conclude that glyphosate-based herbicides, as typically employed in planted forest management, do not pose a significant risk to humans and the terrestrial and aquatic environments.
      PubDate: 2017-06-12
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060208
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 209: Carbon Stocks across a Fifty Year
           Chronosequence of Rubber Plantations in Tropical China

    • Authors: Chenggang Liu, Jiaping Pang, Martin Jepsen, Xiaotao Lü, Jianwei Tang
      First page: 209
      Abstract: Transition from forest to rubber (Hevea brasiliensis Muell. Arg.) plantation has occurred in tropical China for decades. Rubber has been planted on 1 million ha to provide raw materials to the rubber industry. The role of various-aged rubber plantations in carbon (C) sequestration remains unclear. The biomass C accumulation including latex C and C distribution in soil of five different-aged stands (7, 13, 19, 25 and 47 years old) were examined. The total biomass C stock (TBC) and total net primary productivity (NPPtotal), whether with or without latex C, had a close quadratic relationship with stand age. Regardless of stand age, around 68% of the C was stored in aboveground biomass, and NPPlatex contributed to approximately 18% of C sequestration. Soil organic carbon stock in the 100-cm depth remained relatively stable, but it lost about 16.8 Mg ha−1 with stand age. The total ecosystem C stock (TEC) across stands averaged 159.6, 174.4, 229.6, 238.1 and 291.9 Mg ha−1, respectively, of which more than 45% was stored in the soil. However, biomass would become the major C sink rather than soil over a maximal rubber life expectancy. Regression analysis showed that TEC for rubber plantation at 22 years is comparable to a baseline of 230.4 Mg ha−1 for tropical forest in China, and would reach the maximum value at around 54 years. Therefore, rubber plantation can be considered as alternative land use without affecting net forest ecosystem C storage. In addition to the potential C gains, a full set of ecosystem and economic properties have to be quantified in order to assess the trade-offs associated with forest-to-rubber transition.
      PubDate: 2017-06-13
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060209
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 210: A Course of Innovations in Wood Processing
           Industry within the Forestry-Wood Chain in Slovakia: A Q Methodology Study
           to Identify Future Orientation in the Sector

    • Authors: Erika Loučanová, Hubert Paluš, Michal Dzian
      First page: 210
      Abstract: As innovations are the basic premise of commercial success in the market the main objective of this paper is to determine the main course of innovations in wood-processing industry within the forestry-wood chain in Slovakia from the viewpoint of representatives of wood processing companies. Using a Q-methodology approach the emphasis is also put on identification of differences between the opinions of small individual entrepreneurs and representatives of capital companies. Based on the results of structured interview with representatives of 33 wood processing companies the main findings suggest that future innovation activities in the sector will be related to the technology innovations mainly in processing of coniferous timber. However, the extent of such innovations is perceived differently depending on the company size and ownership category. While small individual entrepreneurs expect only slight innovation changes in the industry aimed at the meeting of required standards, managers of capital companies tend to foresee the future vision in restructuralisation of wood-processing industry.
      PubDate: 2017-06-15
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060210
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 211: De Novo Transcriptome Characterization, Gene
           Expression Profiling and Ionic Responses of Nitraria sibirica Pall. under
           Salt Stress

    • Authors: Huanyong Li, Xiaoqian Tang, Jianfeng Zhu, Xiuyan Yang, Huaxin Zhang
      First page: 211
      Abstract: Nitraria sibirica Pall., a typical halophyte of great ecological value, is widely distributed in desert, saline, and coastal saline-alkali environments. Consequently, researching the salt tolerance mechanism of N. sibirica Pall. has great significance to the cultivation and utilization of salt-tolerant plants. In this research, RNA-seq, digital gene expression (DGE), and high flux element analysis technologies were used to investigate the molecular and physiological mechanisms related to salt tolerance of N. sibirica Pall. Integrative analysis and de novo transcriptome assembly generated 137,421 unigenes. In total, 58,340 and 34,033 unigenes were annotated with gene ontology (GO) terms and mapped in Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways, respectively. Three differentially expressed genes (DEGs) libraries were subsequently constructed from the leaves of N. sibirica Pall. seedlings under different treatments: control (CK), light short-term salt stress (CL2), and heavy long-term salt stress (CL6). Eight hundred and twenty-six, and 224 differentially expressed genes were identified in CL2 and CL6 compared to CK, respectively. Finally, ionomic analysis of N. sibirica Pall. seedlings treated with 0, 100, 200 or 300 mM concentrations of NaCl for one day showed that the uptake and distribution of Ca, Cu, Fe, Mg and K in different organs of N. sibirica Pall. were significantly affected by salt stress. Our findings have identified potential genes involved in salt tolerance and in the reference transcriptome and have revealed the salt tolerance mechanism in N. sibirica Pall. These findings will provide further insight into the molecular and physiological mechanisms related to salt stress in N. sibirica Pall. and in other halophytes.
      PubDate: 2017-06-15
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060211
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 212: Tree Density and Forest Productivity in a
           Heterogeneous Alpine Environment: Insights from Airborne Laser Scanning
           and Imaging Spectroscopy

    • Authors: Parviz Fatehi, Alexander Damm, Reik Leiterer, Mahtab Pir Bavaghar, Michael Schaepman, Mathias Kneubühler
      First page: 212
      Abstract: We outline an approach combining airborne laser scanning (ALS) and imaging spectroscopy (IS) to quantify and assess patterns of tree density (TD) and forest productivity (FP) in a protected heterogeneous alpine forest in the Swiss National Park (SNP). We use ALS data and a local maxima (LM) approach to predict TD, as well as IS data (Airborne Prism Experiment—APEX) and an empirical model to estimate FP. We investigate the dependency of TD and FP on site related factors, in particular on surface exposition and elevation. Based on reference data (i.e., 1598 trees measured in 35 field plots), we observed an underestimation of ALS-based TD estimates of 40%. Our results suggest a limited sensitivity of the ALS approach to small trees as well as a dependency of TD estimates on canopy heterogeneity, structure, and species composition. We found a weak to moderate relationship between surface elevation and TD (R2 = 0.18–0.69) and a less pronounced trend with FP (R2 = 0.0–0.56), suggesting that both variables depend on gradients of resource availability. Further to the limitations faced in the sensitivity of the applied approaches, we conclude that the combined application of ALS and IS data was convenient for estimating tree density and mapping FP in north-facing forested areas, however, the accuracy was lower in south-facing forested areas covered with multi-stemmed trees.
      PubDate: 2017-06-16
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060212
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 213: Influence of Altitude on Biochemical
           Properties of European Beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) Forest Soils

    • Authors: Mauro De Feudis, Valeria Cardelli, Luisa Massaccesi, Alessandra Lagomarsino, Flavio Fornasier, Danielle Westphalen, Stefania Cocco, Giuseppe Corti, Alberto Agnelli
      First page: 213
      Abstract: Climate warming is predicted to raise the mean global temperature by 1 °C in the next 50 years, and this change is believed to be capable of affecting soil organic matter cycling and nutrient availability. With the aim of increasing knowledge on the response of forest soils to the ongoing climate change, we used altitude as a proxy for temperature change and studied chemical and biochemical properties of European beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) forest soils at two altitudes (800 and 1000 m) from central Apennines (Italy). Results showed that 1 °C of mean annual air temperature difference between the sites at the two altitudes had greater effect on the mineral horizons than on the organic horizons. At higher altitude, mineral soil had limited development, higher pH, and higher organic matter content due to the lower efficiency of the microbial community. Enzymatic activities of the organic horizons were generally not affected by altitude. Conversely, we observed a higher activity of xylosidase, β-glucosidase, alkaline phosphomonoesterase, arylsulfatase, and leucine-aminopeptidase in the sub-superficial horizons (Bw1 and Bw2) of the soils at 1000 m. We hypothesized that, as a response to environmental and climatic constraints occurring at higher altitude, plant roots increase the production of enzymes directly and/or indirectly by triggering the microbial community through exudation.
      PubDate: 2017-06-17
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060213
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 214: Carbon and Nitrogen Accumulation and
           Decomposition from Coarse Woody Debris in a Naturally Regenerated Korean
           Red Pine (Pinus densiflora S. et Z.) Forest

    • Authors: Nam Noh, Tae Yoon, Rae-Hyun Kim, Nicholas Bolton, Choonsig Kim, Yowhan Son
      First page: 214
      Abstract: The contribution of coarse woody debris (CWD) to forest carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) dynamics is poorly quantified. This study quantified total C and N content in CWD and estimated the decomposition rates of CWD at different decay stages in a 70-year-old naturally regenerated Korean red pine forest (Pinus densiflora S. et Z.). The N concentration in CWD varied among species and decay classes (from 0.15% to 0.82%), and exhibited a decreasing pattern in C:N ratios with increasing decay class. Total CWD amounts of 4.84 Mg C ha−1, dominated by pine logs (45.4%) and decay class III (40.0%), contained total N of 20.48 kg N ha−1, which was approximately nine times the N input from annual tree mortality. In addition, this study demonstrated that the decay constant rate k was 0.2497 for needle litter, whereas k values were 0.0438, 0.0693, 0.1054, and 0.1947 for red pine CWD of decay class I, II, III, and IV, respectively. The decay rates were significantly related to wood density, N concentration, and C:N ratio across the decay classes of CWD. The results suggest that the C:N ratio of CWD is a key factor affecting its decomposition.
      PubDate: 2017-06-16
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060214
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 215: Comparing Airborne Laser Scanning, and
           Image-Based Point Clouds by Semi-Global Matching and Enhanced Automatic
           Terrain Extraction to Estimate Forest Timber Volume

    • Authors: Sami Ullah, Matthias Dees, Pawan Datta, Petra Adler, Barbara Koch
      First page: 215
      Abstract: Information pertaining to forest timber volume is crucial for sustainable forest management. Remotely-sensed data have been incorporated into operational forest inventories to serve the need for ever more diverse and detailed forest statistics and to produce spatially explicit data products. In this study, data derived from airborne laser scanning and image-based point clouds were compared using three volume estimation methods to aid wall-to-wall mapping of forest timber volume. Estimates of forest height and tree density metrics derived from remotely-sensed data are used as explanatory variables, and forest timber volumes based on sample field plots are used as response variables. When compared to data derived from image-based point clouds, airborne laser scanning produced slightly more accurate estimates of timber volume, with a root mean square error (RMSE) of 26.3% using multiple linear regression. In comparison, RMSEs for volume estimates derived from image-based point clouds were 28.3% and 29.0%, respectively, using Semi-Global Matching and enhanced Automatic Terrain Extraction methods. Multiple linear regression was the best-performing parameter estimation method when compared to k-Nearest Neighbour and Support Vector Machine. In many countries, aerial imagery is acquired and updated on regular cycles of 1–5 years when compared to more costly, once-off airborne laser scanning surveys. This study demonstrates point clouds generated from such aerial imagery can be used to enhance the estimation of forest parameters at a stand and forest compartment level-scale using small area estimation methods while at the same time achieving sampling error reduction and improving accuracy at the forest enterprise-level scale.
      PubDate: 2017-06-17
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060215
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 216: Secondary Forest and Shrubland Dynamics in a
           Highly Transformed Landscape in the Northern Andes of Colombia

    • Authors: Kristian Rubiano, Nicola Clerici, Natalia Norden, Andrés Etter
      First page: 216
      Abstract: Understanding the dynamics of natural ecosystems in highly transformed landscapes is key to the design of regional development plans that are more sustainable and otherwise enhance conservation initiatives. We analyzed secondary forest and shrubland dynamics over 30 years (1985–2015) in a densely populated area of the Colombian Andes using satellite and biophysical data. We performed a land-cover change analysis, assessed landscape fragmentation, and applied regression models to evaluate the effects of environmental and geographical correlates with the observed forest transitions. Forest cover area increased during the 30 year-span, due mostly to forest regrowth in areas marginal for agriculture, especially during the first half of the study period. However, a high dynamic of both forest regrowth and clearing near urban centers and roads was observed. Soil fertility turned out to be a key correlate of both forest recovery and deforestation. Secondary forests, <30 years old represent the most fragmented component. Our findings reflect the complexity of the processes occurring in highly transformed and densely populated regions. Overall, this study provides elements for a better understanding of the factors driving land cover change near large urban areas, and raises new iideas for further research.
      PubDate: 2017-06-20
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060216
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 217: Potential and Limits of Retrieving Conifer
           Leaf Area Index Using Smartphone-Based Method

    • Authors: Yonghua Qu, Jian Wang, Jinling Song, Jindi Wang
      First page: 217
      Abstract: Forest leaf area index (LAI) is a key characteristic affecting a field canopy microclimate. In addition to traditional professional measuring instruments, smartphone-based methods have been used to measure forest LAI. However, when smartphone methods were used to measure conifer forest LAI, very different performances were obtained depending on whether the smartphone was held at the zenith angle or at a 57.5° angle. To further validate the potential of smartphone sensors for measuring conifer LAI and to find the limits of this method, this paper reports the results of a comparison of two smartphone methods with an LAI-2000 instrument. It is shown that the method with the smartphone oriented vertically upwards always produced better consistency in magnitude with LAI-2000. The bias of the LAI between the smartphone method and the LAI-2000 instrument was explained with regards to four aspects that can affect LAI: gap fraction; leaf projection ratio; sensor field of view (FOV); and viewing zenith angle (VZA). It was concluded that large FOV and large VZA cause the 57.5° method to overestimate the gap fraction and hence underestimate conifer LAI. For the vertically upward method, the bias caused by the overestimated gap fraction is compensated for by an underestimated leaf projection ratio.
      PubDate: 2017-06-19
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060217
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 218: Attribution of Disturbance Agents to Forest
           Change Using a Landsat Time Series in Tropical Seasonal Forests in the
           Bago Mountains, Myanmar

    • Authors: Katsuto Shimizu, Oumer S. Ahmed, Raul Ponce-Hernandez, Tetsuji Ota, Zar Chi Win, Nobuya Mizoue, Shigejiro Yoshida
      First page: 218
      Abstract: In 2016, in response to forest loss, the Myanmar government banned logging operations for 1 year throughout the entire country and for 10 years in specific regions. However, it is unclear whether this measure will effectively reduce forest loss, because disturbance agents other than logging may have substantial effects on forest loss. In this study, we investigated an approach to attribute disturbance agents to forest loss, and we characterized the attribution of disturbance agents, as well as the areas affected by these agents, in tropical seasonal forests in the Bago Mountains, Myanmar. A trajectory-based analysis using a Landsat time series was performed to detect change pixels. After the aggregation process that grouped adjacent change pixels in the same year as patches, a change attribution was implemented using the spectral, geometric, and topographic information of each patch via random forest modeling. The attributed agents of change include “logging”, “plantation”, “shifting cultivation”, “urban expansion”, “water invasion”, “recovery”, “other change”, and “no change”. The overall accuracy of the attribution model at the patch and area levels was 84.7% and 96.0%, respectively. The estimated disturbance area from the attribution model accounted for 10.0% of the study area. The largest disturbance agent was found to be logging (59.8%), followed by water invasion (14.6%). This approach quantifies disturbance agents at both spatial and temporal scales in tropical seasonal forests, where limited information is available for forest management, thereby providing crucial information for assessing forest conditions in such environments.
      PubDate: 2017-06-19
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060218
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 219: Is Biomass Accumulation in Forests an Option
           to Prevent Climate Change Induced Increases in Nitrate Concentrations in
           the North German Lowland'

    • Authors: Stefan Fleck, Bernd Ahrends, Johannes Sutmöller, Matthias Albert, Jan Evers, Henning Meesenburg
      First page: 219
      Abstract: The North German Lowland is a region with locally high nitrate (NO3−) concentrations in seepage water, inducing an increased susceptibility to the effects of climate change. The future risk of rising NO3− concentrations in seepage water from forests was quantified for four regions in the North German Lowland using climate projections and a modelling system comprising submodels for forest stand development (WaldPlaner), water budgets (WaSiM-ETH), and biogeochemical element cycles (VSD+). The simulations for the period from 1990 to 2070 included three different forest management scenarios (reference, biodiversity, and climate protection) and showed a general decrease in groundwater recharge which could hardly be influenced by any of the management options. The simulated soil organic matter stocks adequately represented their past increase as expected from the National Forest Soil Inventory (NFSI), but also showed a future decline under climate change conditions which leads to higher organic matter decomposition and a long-lasting increase of NO3− leaching from forest soils. While the climate protection oriented scenario shows the highest increase in NO3− concentrations during the projection period until 2070, the biodiversity scenario kept NO3− concentrations in seepage water below the legal thresholds in three of four selected model regions.
      PubDate: 2017-06-21
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060219
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 220: The Role of Respiration in Estimation of Net
           Carbon Cycle: Coupling Soil Carbon Dynamics and Canopy Turnover in a Novel
           Version of 3D-CMCC Forest Ecosystem Model

    • Authors: Sergio Marconi, Tommaso Chiti, Angelo Nolè, Riccardo Valentini, Alessio Collalti
      First page: 220
      Abstract: Understanding the dynamics of organic carbon mineralization is fundamental in forecasting biosphere to atmosphere net carbon ecosystem exchange (NEE). With this perspective, we developed 3D-CMCC-PSM, a new version of the hybrid process based model 3D‐CMCC FEM where also heterotrophic respiration (Rh) is explicitly simulated. The aim was to quantify NEE as a forward problem, by subtracting ecosystem respiration (Reco) to gross primary productivity (GPP). To do so, we developed a simplification of the soil carbon dynamics routine proposed in the DNDC (DeNitrification-DeComposition) computer simulation model. The method calculates decomposition as a function of soil moisture, temperature, state of the organic compartments, and relative abundance of microbial pools. Given the pulse dynamics of soil respiration, we introduced modifications in some of the principal constitutive relations involved in phenology and littering sub-routines. We quantified the model structure-related uncertainty in NEE, by running our training simulations over 1000 random parameter-sets extracted from parameter distributions expected from literature. 3D-CMCC-PSM predictability was tested on independent time series for 6 Fluxnet sites. The model resulted in daily and monthly estimations highly consistent with the observed time series. It showed lower predictability in Mediterranean ecosystems, suggesting that it may need further improvements in addressing evapotranspiration and water dynamics.
      PubDate: 2017-06-21
      DOI: 10.3390/f8060220
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 6 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 138: Potential of Windbreak Trees to Reduce Carbon
           Emissions by Agricultural Operations in the US

    • Authors: William Ballesteros-Possu, James Brandle, Michele Schoeneberger
      First page: 138
      Abstract: Along with sequestering C in forest, trees on farms are able to contribute to greenhouse mitigation through emission avoidance mechanisms. To evaluate the magnitude of these contributions, emission avoidance contributions for field and farmstead windbreak designs in regions across the United States were estimated, along with greenhouse gas (GHG) emission budgets for corn, soybean, winter wheat, and potato operations. We looked at farming scenarios with large (600 ha), mid (300 ha), and small-size (60 ha) farms containing farmsteads built before and after 2000, and growing different cropping systems. Windbreak scenarios were assumed to be up to 5% of the crop area for field windbreaks, while emission avoidance for farmstead windbreaks were assumed to provide a 10% and 25% reduction in energy usage for space conditioning and heating, respectively. Total reduction of C equivalent (CE) emissions by windbreaks on farm systems ranged from a low of 0.9 Mg CE year−1 for a 60-ha farm with a home built before 2000 to 39.1 Mg CE year−1 for a 600-ha farm with a home built after 2000. By reducing fossil fuel usage from farm operations, windbreaks provide a promising strategy for reducing GHG emissions from agriculture in the USA.
      PubDate: 2017-04-26
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050138
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 139: Modeling Variation in Crown Profile with Tree
           Status and Cardinal Directions for Planted Larix olgensis Henry Trees in
           Northeast China

    • Authors: Huilin Gao, Lihu Dong, Fengri Li
      First page: 139
      Abstract: Crown profile models were developed for north, east, south, and west crown directions of dominant trees, intermediate trees, and suppressed trees in planted stands of Larix olgensis Henry in Northeast China. A total of 139 sample trees were randomly selected, and all branches of each tree were measured. A segmented power equation, segmented polynomial equation, modified Weibull equation, and Kozak equation were selected as the candidate models. A traditional approach that did not consider the differences between tree status and crown directions was also developed. Three steps were conducted to analyze the effect of tree status (dominant, intermediate, and suppressed tree) and crown direction (north, east, south, and west) on the crown profiles using a dummy variable approach. Step 1 considered only tree status, Step 2 considered only crown direction, and Step 3 took both tree status and crown direction into account. Nonlinear mixed-effects model was used to express the effect of individual tree level on crown shape, and was also compared to the ordinary least-squares and generalized least-squares model. The results demonstrated that the modified Kozak equation showed good performance in the crown profile description. The nonlinear mixed-effects model significantly improved the model performance compared to the ordinary least-squares and generalized least-squares model. There were differences among the crown profiles among the four directions of dominant, intermediate, and suppressed trees. South-oriented crowns had the tendency to be the largest, which is likely to be mainly a result of light conditions. The competition status of the subject tree was the main reason leading to an asymmetric crown. Individual trees with strong competition levels had smaller crowns.
      PubDate: 2017-04-26
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050139
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 140: The Influence of Monsoon Climate on Latewood
           Growth of Southwestern Ponderosa Pine

    • Authors: Lucy Kerhoulas, Thomas Kolb, George Koch
      First page: 140
      Abstract: The North American Monsoon delivers warm season precipitation to much of the southwestern United States, yet the importance of this water source for forested ecosystems in the region is not well understood. While it is widely accepted that trees in southwestern forests use winter precipitation for earlywood production, the extent to which summer (monsoon season) precipitation supports latewood production is unclear. We used tree ring records, local climate data, and stable isotope analyses (δ18O) of water and cellulose to examine the importance of monsoon precipitation for latewood production in mature ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Dougl.) in northern Arizona. Our analyses identified monsoon season vapor pressure deficit (VPD) and Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI) as significant effects on latewood growth, together explaining 39% of latewood ring width variation. Stem water and cellulose δ18O analyses suggest that monsoon precipitation was not directly used for latewood growth. Our findings suggest that mature ponderosa pines in this region utilize winter precipitation for growth throughout the entire year. The influence of monsoon precipitation on growth is indirect and mediated by its effect on atmospheric moisture stress (VPD). Together, summer VPD and antecedent soil moisture conditions have a strong influence on latewood growth.
      PubDate: 2017-04-25
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050140
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 141: Riparian Partial Harvesting and Upland Clear
           Cutting Alter Bird Communities in a Boreal Mixedwood Forest

    • Authors: Stephen Holmes, Ken McIlwrick, David Kreutzweiser, Lisa Venier
      First page: 141
      Abstract: Forested buffer strips are typically prescribed around water bodies during forest harvesting operations to minimize effects on aquatic communities and to maintain fish and wildlife habitat. It has been argued that the systematic application of these buffer strips in the boreal forest results in the creation of an unnatural distribution of linear patterns of older-growth forest which is not consistent with the current emulating natural disturbance paradigm. We conducted a multi-year, temporally and spatially controlled, manipulative experiment to investigate the short-term impacts of an alternative practice of riparian partial harvesting and upland clear cutting on breeding and migrating forest birds. Effects on breeding bird community composition were assessed using a modified point counting method. Effects of harvesting on habitat utilization during fall migration were assessed by mist-netting. Breeding bird communities changed significantly post-harvest, but riparian communities diverged less from the pre-harvest condition than upland communities. Populations of early successional/edge species increased post-harvest and forest dependent species declined. Population declines tended to be smaller in the riparian partial cuts than in the upland clear cuts. Capture rates and movement patterns of fall migrants were unaffected by riparian partial harvesting, but catches of Tennessee Warbler (Oreothlypis peregrina), Nashville Warbler (Oreothlypis ruficapilla), Palm Warbler (Setophaga palmarum) and Yellow-rumped Warbler (Setophaga coronata) increased in upland clear cuts. Our results suggest that partial harvesting in riparian reserves may be a viable management option that accommodates the needs of forest dependent birds.
      PubDate: 2017-04-25
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050141
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 142: Ecosystem Service Valuation through Wildfire
           Risk Mitigation: Design, Governance, and Outcomes of the Flagstaff
           Watershed Protection Project (FWPP)

    • Authors: Roy Miller, Erik Nielsen, Ching-Hsun Huang
      First page: 142
      Abstract: The full value of benefits rendered from healthy watersheds is difficult to estimate, and ecosystem service (ES) valuation sometimes necessarily occurs in the form of costs incurred or avoided. Along these lines, social-ecological systems including Payment for Watershed Services (PWS) are increasing in frequency and can help land management entities to bridge budget shortfalls for funding needed watershed restoration forestry treatments. The Flagstaff Watershed Protection Project (FWPP) is a bond-financed wildfire risk mitigation partnership and PWS program in Northern Arizona, the only forest management project that utilizes a municipal bond as the financial mechanism in conjunction with a partnership governance structure to invest in federal land management. The purpose of this research was to describe this new governance structure to understand the potential benefits to communities and federal land management agencies for protecting watershed services. Data were derived from document review and key informant interviews (n = 9). FWPP institutional design and governance structures were tailored to maximize community strengths and encompassed several advantages over traditional federal land management models; these advantages include increased collaboration and institutional support, financial security, and public approval. The FWPP represents an innovative PWS system that can help showcase unique community and federal forest management partnerships that benefit watershed health in western US communities.
      PubDate: 2017-04-26
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050142
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 143: Genetic Diversity in Relict and Fragmented
           Populations of Ulmus glabra Hudson in the Central System of the Iberian

    • Authors: María Martín del Puerto, Felipe Martínez García, Aparajita Mohanty, Juan Martín
      First page: 143
      Abstract: Ulmus glabra Hudson, or Wych elm, occurs as fragmented and relict natural populations in the Central System, which acts as a refugium in the Iberian Peninsula. Considering the importance of the Central System populations of U. glabra, the main objective was to assess their genetic diversity using nuclear microsatellite markers. A total of 360 different genotypes were detected in the 427 U. glabra individuals analyzed. Wych elm populations showed a highly significant genetic differentiation (24%; p = 0.0001). Of the 22 populations studied, population of Rozas de Puerto Real (ROZ) showed the highest values of effective number of alleles (2.803), mean Shannon’s diversity (1.047) and expected heterozygosity (0.590). Populations of ROZ and Mombeltrán (MOM) showed the highest values of observed heterozygosity (0.838 and 0.709, respectively), and highly negative values for inbreeding coefficient (−0.412 and −0.575, respectively). Also, most of putative hybrids (50 of 55) were observed in these two populations. Demographic analysis revealed signals for recent (four populations) and ancestral (fifteen populations) bottlenecks. Fragmented populations with diminishing number of individuals, along with anthropogenic intervention and Dutch elm disease (DED), are the main threats to U. glabra populations. From a future perspective, the information generated can be considered in the formulation of conservation strategies for U. glabra populations in the Central System.
      PubDate: 2017-04-27
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050143
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 144: Regeneration Dynamics of Coast Redwood, a
           Sprouting Conifer Species: A Review with Implications for Management and

    • Authors: Kevin O’Hara, Lauren Cox, Sasha Nikolaeva, Julian Bauer, Rachelle Hedges
      First page: 144
      Abstract: Coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens (Lamb. ex. D. Don) Endl.) is unique among conifer species because of its longevity, the great sizes of individual trees, and its propensity to reproduce through sprouts. Timber harvesting in the native redwood range along the coast of the western United States has necessitated restoration aimed to promote old forest structures to increase the total amount of old forest, the connectivity between old forests, and to enhance the resiliency of these ecosystems. After disturbance or harvest, healthy redwood stumps sprout vigorously, often producing dozens of sprouts within two years of disturbance. These sprouts form highly aggregated spatial patterns because they are clustered around stumps that may number less than 50 ha−1. Thinning of sprouts can accelerate individual tree growth, providing an effective restoration strategy to accelerate formation of large trees and old forest structures or increase stand growth for timber production. However, management, including restoration activities, is a contentious issue throughout the native range of redwood because of the history of overexploitation of this resource and perceptions that overexploitation is continuing. This paper reviews the science of early stand dynamics in coast redwood and their implications for restoration and other silvicultural strategies.
      PubDate: 2017-04-27
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050144
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 145: Invasive Everywhere? Phylogeographic Analysis
           of the Globally Distributed Tree Pathogen Lasiodiplodia theobromae

    • Authors: James Mehl, Michael Wingfield, Jolanda Roux, Bernard Slippers
      First page: 145
      Abstract: Fungi in the Botryosphaeriaceae are important plant pathogens that persist endophytically in infected plant hosts. Lasiodiplodia theobromae is a prominent species in this family that infects numerous plants in tropical and subtropical areas. We characterized a collection of 255 isolates of L. theobromae from 52 plants and from many parts of the world to determine the global genetic structure and a possible origin of the fungus using sequence data from four nuclear loci. One to two dominant haplotypes emerged across all loci, none of which could be associated with geography or host; and no other population structure or subdivision was observed. The data also did not reveal a clear region of origin of the fungus. This global collection of L. theobromae thus appears to constitute a highly connected population. The most likely explanation for this is the human-mediated movement of plant material infected by this fungus over a long period of time. These data, together with related studies on other Botryosphaeriaceae, highlight the inability of quarantine systems to reduce the spread of pathogens with a prolonged latent phase.
      PubDate: 2017-04-27
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050145
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 146: Spatial Heterogeneity of the Forest Canopy
           Scales with the Heterogeneity of an Understory Shrub Based on Fractal

    • Authors: Catherine Denny, Scott Nielsen
      First page: 146
      Abstract: Spatial heterogeneity of vegetation is an important landscape characteristic, but is difficult to assess due to scale-dependence. Here we examine how spatial patterns in the forest canopy affect those of understory plants, using the shrub Canada buffaloberry (Shepherdia canadensis (L.) Nutt.) as a focal species. Evergreen and deciduous forest canopy and buffaloberry shrub presence were measured with line-intercept sampling along ten 2-km transects in the Rocky Mountain foothills of west-central Alberta, Canada. Relationships between overstory canopy and understory buffaloberry presence were assessed for scales ranging from 2 m to 502 m. Fractal dimensions of both canopy and buffaloberry were estimated and then related using box-counting methods to evaluate spatial heterogeneity based on patch distribution and abundance. Effects of canopy presence on buffaloberry were scale-dependent, with shrub presence negatively related to evergreen canopy cover and positively related to deciduous cover. The effect of evergreen canopy was significant at a local scale between 2 m and 42 m, while that of deciduous canopy was significant at a meso-scale between 150 m and 358 m. Fractal analysis indicated that buffaloberry heterogeneity positively scaled with evergreen canopy heterogeneity, but was unrelated to that of deciduous canopy. This study demonstrates that evergreen canopy cover is a determinant of buffaloberry heterogeneity, highlighting the importance of spatial scale and canopy composition in understanding canopy-understory relationships.
      PubDate: 2017-04-27
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050146
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 147: Tree Diseases as a Cause and Consequence of
           Interacting Forest Disturbances

    • Authors: Richard Cobb, Margaret Metz
      First page: 147
      Abstract: The disease triangle is a basic and highly flexible tool used extensively in forest pathology. By linking host, pathogen, and environmental factors, the model provides etiological insights into disease emergence. Landscape ecology, as a field, focuses on spatially heterogeneous environments and is most often employed to understand the dynamics of relatively large areas such as those including multiple ecosystems (a landscape) or regions (multiple landscapes). Landscape ecology is increasingly focused on the role of co-occurring, overlapping, or interacting disturbances in shaping spatial heterogeneity as well as understanding how disturbance interactions mediate ecological impacts. Forest diseases can result in severe landscape-level mortality which could influence a range of other landscape-level disturbances including fire, wind impacts, and land use among others. However, apart from a few important exceptions, these disturbance-disease interactions are not well studied. We unite aspects of forest pathology with landscape ecology by applying the disease-triangle approach from the perspective of a spatially heterogeneous environment. At the landscape-scale, disturbances such as fire, insect outbreak, wind, and other events can be components of the environmental ‘arm’ of the disease triangle, meaning that a rich base of forest pathology can be leveraged to understand how disturbances are likely to impact diseases. Reciprocal interactions between disease and disturbance are poorly studied but landscape ecology has developed tools that can identify how they affect the dynamics of ecosystems and landscapes.
      PubDate: 2017-04-28
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050147
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 148: Cross-Talk between Physiological and Metabolic
           Adjustments Adopted by /Quercus cerris/ to Mitigate the Effects of Severe
           Drought and Realistic Future Ozone Concentrations

    • Authors: Lorenzo Cotrozzi, Damiano Remorini, Elisa Pellegrini, Lucia Guidi, Giacomo Lorenzini, Rossano Massai, Cristina Nali, Marco Landi
      First page: 148
      Abstract: Global climate change represents a moving target for plant acclimation and/or adaptation, especially in the Mediterranean basin. In this study, the interactions of severe drought (20% of the effective daily evapotranspiration) and O3 fumigation (80 ppb, 5 h day−1, for 28 consecutive days) on (i) photosynthetic performance, (ii) cell membrane stability, (iii) hydric relations, (iv) accumulation of compatible solutes, and (v) lipophilic antioxidant compounds were investigated in young Quercus cerris plants. In addition to the typical drought-induced stomatal closure, imposition of water withholding dramatically influenced the profile of stress-associated metabolites, i.e., abscisic acid (ABA), proline, and lipophilic antioxidants. However, plants were not able to delay or prevent the negative effects of water deficit, the greatest impacting factor in this study. This translated into a steep decline of photosynthetic efficiency, leaf hydration, and membrane fluidity and permeability. When water stress was coupled with O3, plants orchestrated cross-talk among ABA, proline, and sugar in fully-expanded mature leaves, partially leading to a premature senescence.
      PubDate: 2017-04-29
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050148
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 149: People, Forests, and Change: Lessons from the
           Pacific Northwest. Edited by Deanna H. Olson and Beatrice Van Horne,
           Island Press, 2017; 350 Pages. Price: Hardback $90, ISBN 9781610917667;
           Paperback $45, ISBN 9781610917674

    • Authors: Shu-Kun Lin
      First page: 149
      Abstract: n/a
      PubDate: 2017-04-28
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050149
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 150: Stakeholder Participation in REDD+ Readiness
           Activities for Three Collaborative Projects in Lao PDR

    • Authors: Saykham Boutthavong, Kimihiko Hyakumura, Makoto Ehara
      First page: 150
      Abstract: A key challenge for reducing emission from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD) in developing countries is to balance the power of various stakeholders in decision making. This study explores the forms of stakeholder participation in the implementation of three pilot projects in Laos, with a focus on who actually makes decisions on project activities. We found that stakeholder roles in making decisions were imbalanced. The central government and development partner organizations were the ones who actually fulfill the roles of decision-makers in most project activities. Although local communities were not the key stakeholders in decision making in most activities, their roles seem to have increased in the activities where participatory approaches were applied. Participation of the private sector, non-governmental organizations, academic and research institutes and mass organizations was limited. Opportunities to reach decision-makers regarding project activities came through service contract agreements. Our findings suggest that an understanding of who fulfills the key roles will support a decentralization of decision making by balancing power and redistributing the roles from dominant to weaker stakeholders. In addition, the private sector’s participation may enhance opportunities to harmonize their investments for supporting REDD+ development and reduce the negative impacts on the forests and the environment.
      PubDate: 2017-04-29
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050150
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 151: Accuracy of Photogrammetric UAV-Based Point
           Clouds under Conditions of Partially-Open Forest Canopy

    • Authors: Julián Tomaštík, Martin Mokroš, Šimon Saloň, František Chudý, Daniel Tunák
      First page: 151
      Abstract: This study focuses on the horizontal and vertical accuracy of point-clouds based on unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) imagery. The DJI Phantom 3 Professional unmanned aerial vehicle and Agisoft PhotoScan Professional software were used for the evaluation. Three test sites with differing conditions (canopy openness, slope, terrain complexity, etc.) were used for comparison. The accuracy evaluation was aimed on positions of points placed on the ground. This is often disregarded under forest conditions as it is not possible to photogrammetrically reconstruct terrain that is covered by a fully-closed forest canopy. Therefore, such a measurement can only be conducted when there are gaps in the canopy or under leaf-off conditions in the case of deciduous forests. The reported sub-decimetre horizontal accuracy and vertical accuracy lower than 20 cm have proven that the method is applicable for survey, inventory, and various other tasks in forests. An analysis of ground control point (GCP) quantity and configuration showed that the quantity had only a minor effect on the accuracy in cases of plots with ~1-hectare area when using the aforementioned software. Therefore, methods increasing quality (precision, accuracy) of GCP positions should be preferred over the increase of quantity alone.
      PubDate: 2017-04-30
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050151
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 152: Microsporogenesis and Induction of Unreduced
           Pollen with High Temperatures in Rubber Tree Clone RRIM 600

    • Authors: Peng-Qiang Yao, Guo-Hua Li, Qing-Yi Long, Li-Gang He, Xiang-Yang Kang
      First page: 152
      Abstract: In order to induce unreduced pollens, microsporogenesis and male flower bud (MFB) development were compared in rubber tree clone RRIM 600. We observed strong asynchronism in different MFBs in an inflorescence. Asynchronism of microsporogenesis in different microsporangiums from a MFB was also observed. The relationship between microsporogenesis and external morphology was examined, which was used to estimate microsporogenesis stages of MFBs. Unreduced pollen was successfully induced by high temperature exposure in this study, with the highest production ratio of about 20.17% at 44 °C. Our findings showed that diplotene to metaphase I may be the most effective stage for unreduced pollen induction, and 42–44 °C may be the suitable treatment temperature in rubber trees. Thus, microsporogenesis of MFBs has been elucidated in detail in the rubber tree clone RRIM 600 and will provide a reference for future breeding studies of rubber trees.
      PubDate: 2017-05-02
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050152
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 153: The Effect of Urban Green Spaces on the Urban
           Thermal Environment and Its Seasonal Variations

    • Authors: Chaobin Yang, Xingyuan He, Ranghu Wang, Fengqin Yan, Lingxue Yu, Kun Bu, Jiuchun Yang, Liping Chang, Shuwen Zhang
      First page: 153
      Abstract: Urban green spaces have been shown to decrease land surface temperature (LST) significantly. However, few studies have explored the relationships between urban green spaces and LST across different seasons at different spatial scales. In this study, using Changchun, China as a case study, landscape ecology and comparative approaches were employed quantitatively to investigate the effects of the composition and configuration of urban green spaces on the urban thermal environments. LST maps were retrieved from Landsat 8 Thermal Infrared Sensor (TIRS) data acquired on four dates that represented four different seasons, and detailed information of urban green spaces was extracted from high resolution imagery GF-1. Normalized differential vegetation index (NDVI) and six landscape metrics at patch, class, and landscape level were used to characterize the spatial patterns of urban green spaces. The results showed that urban green spaces did have significant cooling effects in all seasons, except for winter, but the effects varied considerably across the different seasons and green types, and seemed to depend on the NDVI and size of urban green spaces. Compared to shape metrics, the negative relationships between the LST and the area and the NDVI of urban green spaces were more significant. Both the composition and configuration of urban green spaces can affect the distribution of LST. Based on findings with one city, given a fixed area of urban green spaces, the number of green patches can positively or negatively affect the LST, depending on if the number is larger than a threshold or not, and the threshold varies according to the given area. These findings provide new perspectives, and further research is also suggested, to generate a better understanding of how urban green spaces affect the urban thermal environment.
      PubDate: 2017-05-02
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050153
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 154: Tree Climbing Techniques and Volume Equations

    • Authors: Bruno Gimenez, Leandro dos Santos, Jonas Gebara, Carlos Celes, Flávia Durgante, Adriano Lima, Joaquim dos Santos, Niro Higuchi
      First page: 154
      Abstract: The Eschweilera genus has great ecological and economic importance due to its wide abundance in the Amazon basin. One potential use for the Eschweilera genus is in forest management, where just a few trees are removed per hectare. In order to improve the forest management in the Amazon, this study assessed two critical issues: volume equations fitted for a single genus and the development of a non-destructive method using climbing techniques. The equipment used to measure the sample trees included: climbing rope, ascenders, descenders, and carabiners. To carry out the objectives of this study, 64 trees with diameter at breast height (DBH) ≥ 10 cm were selected and measured in ZF-2 Tropical Forestry Station near the city of Manaus, Brazil. Four single input models with DBH and four dual input models with DBH and merchantable height (H) were tested. The Husch model (V = a × DBHb) presented the best performance (R2 = 0.97). This model does not require the merchantable height, which is an important advantage, because of the difficulty in measuring this variable in tropical forests. When the merchantable height data are collected using accurate methods, the Schumacher and Hall model (V = a × DBHb × Hc) is the most appropriated. Tree climbing techniques with the use of ropes, as a non-destructive method, is a good alternative to measure the merchantable height, the diameter along the stem, and also estimate the tree volume (m3) of the Eschweilera genus in the Amazon basin.
      PubDate: 2017-05-03
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050154
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 155: Impacts of Beech Bark Disease and Climate
           Change on American Beech

    • Authors: Christopher Stephanson, Natalie Ribarik Coe
      First page: 155
      Abstract: American beech (Fagus grandifolia Ehrh.) is a dominant component of forest tree cover over a large portion of eastern North America and this deciduous, mast-bearing tree species plays a key role in these forest ecosystems. Beech bark disease (BBD) is a scale insect-fungus complex that has caused the decline and death of afflicted beech trees. This disease has become a common feature in North American forest landscapes. Resistance to BBD is at the level of the beech scale (Cryptococcus fagisuga Lind.). Beech scale attack predisposes the tree to subsequent infection by Neonectria fungi. The impact of this tree disease has been shown to be significant, particularly in beech dominated forests. Scale-free trees (resistant to BBD) have been reported to range from only 1% to 3% in infested stands, with estimates ranging from 80–95% for overall infestation (for all beech within the current North American range). In addition to BBD, overall beech health will be directly impacted by climate change, if one specifically considers the expected fluctuations in precipitation leading to both drought periods and flooding. Beech is particularly sensitive to both extremes and is less resilient than other broad leaf tree species. Although the increase in global temperatures will likely shift the current range of the American beech, milder winters and less snowpack will favor propagation and survival of the beech scale. This review aims to present the current outlook for American beech in light of climate change. The natural history of the American beech and the onslaught of BBD during the last century will be covered, followed by the potential effects of a changing climate on BBD-infested forests. Evidence from models of European beech (Fagus sylvatica) and other host-pathogen systems will supplement data directly gathered to evaluate BBD in American beech. We present the case that although climate change is likely to be a confounding factor in the continued loss of American beech, increasing our understanding of possible mechanisms of resistance and environmental factors that may influence susceptibility of American beech to BBD can inform proactive management strategies.
      PubDate: 2017-05-03
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050155
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 156: The Effects of Shade, Fertilizer, and Pruning
           on Eastern Hemlock Trees and Hemlock Woolly Adelgid

    • Authors: Thomas McAvoy, Ryan Mays, Nels Johnson, Scott Salom
      First page: 156
      Abstract: Hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA), Adelges tsugae Annand, an invasive insect native to the Pacific Northwest and Asia, is responsible for widespread health decline and mortality of native hemlocks (Tsuga spp.) in the eastern United States. Shading and fertilizer has been found to affect the survival and health of both HWA and hemlocks. These abiotic factors have been studied separately but not in combination. In this three year study, eastern hemlock trees (1–2 m tall) were treated with pruning, fertilizer, and shade to determine their effects on hemlock tree health and HWA survival and density. Shade cloths were erected over individual trees, granulated fertilizer was applied, and trees were pruned annually. The total number of HWA were counted during the sistens and progrediens adult stages on the low, mid, and high branches on the north, east, south, and west sides of each tree for three years. Survival of aestivating sistens was recorded in artificially, naturally, and unshaded hemlocks. The mean of percent tips alive, branches alive, and foliage density was used to calculate a hemlock health index (scale of 0–100). Shade cloth reduced solar radiation to the trees to levels similar to a naturally-forested hemlock canopy, but did not alter temperature. Trees exposed to shade alone and shade plus fertilizer maintained the greatest HWA density. On unshaded trees, branches on the west side of the tree had lower HWA densities and branches high on the tree had the lowest HWA densities. Pruning plus fertilizer and shading plus fertilizer reduced tree health. Shaded trees had reduced branchlet new growth length. Survival of summer aestivating sistens was nearly twice the survival under artificially- and naturally-shaded trees compared to unshaded trees. There was an inverse density-dependent survival response for aestivating HWA under artificially-shaded and unshaded trees but not naturally-shaded trees. Unshaded hemlock trees had lower HWA densities due to increased mortality of summer aestivating sistens. Unshaded trees had better health and longer new growth branchlets due to increased exposure to solar radiation and lower HWA densities. Silvicultural thinning of hemlocks in forest stands could increase direct sunlight reaching the trees and help decrease HWA densities and improve hemlock health.
      PubDate: 2017-05-04
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050156
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 157: Understanding Ecosystem Service Preferences
           across Residential Classifications near Mt. Baker Snoqualmie National
           Forest, Washington (USA)

    • Authors: Katherine Williams, Kelly Biedenweg, Lee Cerveny
      First page: 157
      Abstract: Ecosystem services consistently group together both spatially and cognitively into “bundles”. Understanding socio-economic predictors of these bundles is essential to informing a management approach that emphasizes equitable distribution of ecosystem services. We received 1796 completed surveys from stakeholders of the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest (WA, USA) using both in-person workshops and an online platform. Survey respondents rated the importance of 26 ecosystem services. Subsequent analysis revealed six distinct preference bundles of these services: environmental quality, utilitarian values, heritage values, two types of recreational values, and access and roads. Results suggest that the conceptualizations of these bundles are consistent across socio-demographic groups. Resource agencies that seek to frame dialogue around critical values may want to consider these broadly representative bundle sets as a meaningful organizing framework that would resonate with diverse constituents.
      PubDate: 2017-05-06
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050157
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 158: Deadwood Decay in a Burnt Mediterranean Pine

    • Authors: Carlos Molinas-González, Jorge Castro, Alexandro Leverkus
      First page: 158
      Abstract: Dead wood remaining after wildfires represents a biological legacy for forest regeneration, and its decay is both cause and consequence of a large set of ecological processes. However, the rate of wood decomposition after fires is still poorly understood, particularly for Mediterranean-type ecosystems. In this study, we analyzed deadwood decomposition following a wildfire in a Mediterranean pine plantation in the Sierra Nevada Natural and National Park (southeast Spain). Three plots were established over an elevational/species gradient spanning from 1477 to 2053 m above sea level, in which burnt logs of three species of pines were experimentally laid out and wood densities were estimated five times over ten years. The logs lost an overall 23% of their density, although this value ranged from an average 11% at the highest-elevation plot (dominated by Pinus sylvestris) to 32% at an intermediate elevation (with P. nigra). Contrary to studies in other climates, large-diameter logs decomposed faster than small-diameter logs. Our results provide one of the longest time series for wood decomposition in Mediterranean ecosystems and suggest that this process provides spatial variability in the post-fire ecosystem at the scale of stands due to variable speeds of decay. Common management practices such as salvage logging diminish burnt wood and influence the rich ecological processes related to its decay.
      PubDate: 2017-05-08
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050158
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 159: Climate Drives Episodic Conifer Establishment

    • Authors: Monica Rother, Thomas Veblen
      First page: 159
      Abstract: In recent years, warming climate and increased fire activity have raised concern about post-fire recovery of western U.S. forests. We assessed relationships between climate variability and tree establishment after fire in dry ponderosa pine forests of the Colorado Front Range. We harvested and aged over 400 post-fire juvenile ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) and Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) trees using an improved tree-ring based approach that yielded annually-resolved dates and then assessed relationships between climate variability and pulses of tree establishment. We found that tree establishment was largely concentrated in years of above-average moisture availability in the growing season, including higher amounts of precipitation and more positive values of the Palmer Drought Severity Index. Under continued climate change, drier conditions associated with warming temperatures may limit forest recovery after fire, which could result in lower stand densities or shifts to non-forested vegetation in some areas.
      PubDate: 2017-05-08
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050159
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 160: An Updated Review of Dendrochronological
           Investigations in Mexico, a Megadiverse Country with a High Potential for
           Tree-Ring Sciences

    • Authors: Andrea Acosta-Hernández, Marín Pompa-García, Jesús Camarero
      First page: 160
      Abstract: Dendrochronology is a very useful science to reconstruct the long-term responses of trees and other woody plants forming annual rings in response to their environment. The present review considered Mexico, a megadiverse country with a high potential for tree-ring sciences given its high climatic and environmental variability. We reviewed papers considering Mexican tree species that were published from 2001 to 2016. Most of these studies examined tree species from temperate forests, mainly in the pine and fir species. The review included 31 tree species. The most intensively sampled family and species were the Pinaceae and Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziessi (Mirb.) Franco), respectively. Some threatened tree species were also studied. Dendrochronological investigations were mainly conducted in northern and central Mexico, with Durango being the most sampled state. The reviewed studies were mostly developed for hydroclimatic reconstructions, which were mainly based on the tree-ring width as a proxy for the climate. Tree-ring studies were carried out in both national and foreign institutions. Our review identified relevant research gaps for dendrochronologists such as: (i) biomes which are still scarcely studied (e.g., tropical dry forests) and (ii) approaches still rarely applied to Mexican forests as dendroecology.
      PubDate: 2017-05-09
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050160
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 161: Novelty and Its Ecological Implications to Dry
           Forest Functioning and Conservation

    • Authors: Ariel Lugo, Heather Erickson
      First page: 161
      Abstract: Tropical and subtropical dry forest life zones support forests with lower stature and species richness than do tropical and subtropical life zones with greater water availability. The number of naturalized species that can thrive and mix with native species to form novel forests in dry forest conditions in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands is lower than in other insular life zones. These novel dry forests are young (<60 years) with low structural development, high species dominance, and variable species density. Species density is low during initial establishment and increases with age. At the 1-ha scale, novel forests can have greater species density than mature native forests. Species groups, such as nitrogen-fixing species, and other naturalized species that dominate novel dry forests, have a disproportional influence on forest element stoichiometry. Novel dry forests, compared to the mean of all forest species assemblages island-wide, tend to have fallen leaf litter with lower than average manganese and sodium concentrations and lower than average C/N and C/P ratios. After accounting for significant differences in stand age, geology, and or precipitation, novel dry forests compared to native dry forests have higher C anomalies, lower Ca and Na anomalies, and lower C/N ratio anomalies. Taken together, these characteristics may influence litter decomposition rates and the species composition, diversity, and food web dynamics in litter and soil. Novel dry forests also contribute to the conservation of native plant species on highly degraded lands.
      PubDate: 2017-05-10
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050161
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 162: A Mixed Application of Geographically Weighted
           Regression and Unsupervised Classification for Analyzing Latex Yield
           Variability in Yunnan, China

    • Authors: Oh Kim, Jeffrey Nugent, Zhuang-Fang Yi, Joshua Newell, Andrew Curtis
      First page: 162
      Abstract: This paper introduces a mixed method approach for analyzing the determinants of natural latex yields and the associated spatial variations and identifying the most suitable regions for producing latex. Geographically Weighted Regressions (GWR) and Iterative Self-Organizing Data Analysis Technique (ISODATA) are jointly applied to the georeferenced data points collected from the rubber plantations in Xishuangbanna (in Yunnan province, south China) and other remotely-sensed spatial data. According to the GWR models, Age of rubber tree, Percent of clay in soil, Elevation, Solar radiation, Population, Distance from road, Distance from stream, Precipitation, and Mean temperature turn out statistically significant, indicating that these are the major determinants shaping latex yields at the prefecture level. However, the signs and magnitudes of the parameter estimates at the aggregate level are different from those at the lower spatial level, and the differences are due to diverse reasons. The ISODATA classifies the landscape into three categories: high, medium, and low potential yields. The map reveals that Mengla County has the majority of land with high potential yield, while Jinghong City and Menghai County show lower potential yield. In short, the mixed method can offer a means of providing greater insights in the prediction of agricultural production.
      PubDate: 2017-05-11
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050162
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 163: Introducing a Non-Stationary Matrix Model for
           Stand-Level Optimization, an Even-Aged Pine (Pinus Sylvestris L.) Stand in

    • Authors: Johanna Pyy, Anssi Ahtikoski, Erkki Laitinen, Jouni Siipilehto
      First page: 163
      Abstract: In general, matrix models are commonly applied to predict tree growth for size-structured tree populations, whereas empirical–statistical models are designed to predict tree growth based on a vast amount of field observations. From the theoretical point of view, matrix models can be considered to be more generic since their dependency on ad hoc growth conditions is far less prevalent than that of empirical–statistical models. On the other hand, the main pitfall of matrix models is their inability to include variation among the individuals within a size class, occasionally resulting in less accurate predictions of tree growth compared to empirical–statistical models. Thus, the relevant question is whether a matrix model can capture essential tree-growth dynamics/characteristics so that the model produces accurate stand projections which can further be applied in practical decision-making. Such a dynamic characteristic in our model is the basal area of trees, which causes nonlinearity in time. Therefore, our matrix model is a nonlinear model. The empirical data for models was based on 20 sample plots representing 8360 tree records. Further, according to the model, stand projections were produced for three Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) sapling stands (age of 25 years, stand density fluctuating from 850 to 1400 stems ha - 1 ). Then, (even-aged) stand management was optimized by applying sequential quadratic programming (SQP) among those growth predictions. The objective function of the optimization task was to maximize the net present value (NPV) of the ongoing rotation. The stands were located in Northern Ostrobothnia, Finland, on nutrient-poor soil type. The results indicated that initial stand density had an effect on optimal solutions—optimal stand management varied with respect to thinnings (timing and intensity) as well as to optimal rotation. Further, an increasing discount rate shortened considerably the optimal rotation period, and relaxing the minimum thinning removal to 30 m 3 ha - 1 resulted in an increase both in number of thinnings and in the maximum net present value.
      PubDate: 2017-05-11
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050163
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 164: Influence of Cutting Type and Fertilization in
           Production of Containerized Poplar Plants

    • Authors: Henrik Böhlenius, Thomas Fransson, Emma Holmström, Carl Salk
      First page: 164
      Abstract: Most poplar plantations are planted on marginal agricultural land, but poplar plantations also hold the potential for increased profits compared to plantations of other species on non-agricultural, previously forested land. To date, the establishment of poplar plantations on previously forested land is limited by the production of suitable containerized poplar stock for planting. The objective of this study is to investigate how different cutting quality and fertilizer treatments influence height, diameter, and root biomass growth and root-to-shoot ratio, all important variables for plant establishment. Our results show that fertilization increases plant growth and that single-bud and two-bud cuttings with cutting diameters of 5 to 10 mm can be used in the production of containerized plants. Root biomass was similar between these plant types but the number of roots per plant was higher if two-bud cuttings were used. In contrast to fertilized plants, only one cutting type (two-bud 10 mm) grew to a sufficient height and diameter for use in poplar plantation establishment. Interestingly, the root-to-shoot ratio for this cutting type was 0.16 while the ratio for the same cutting type is 0.11 if fertilized. Together, these results suggest that most types of poplar cuttings can be used to establish poplar plantations if fertilizer is used and that the largest cutting type (two-bud 10 mm) might be more suitable to establish poplar plantations at harsh sites, thus reducing the cost of poplar plant production.
      PubDate: 2017-05-11
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050164
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 165: An Evaluation of Stakeholder Perception
           Differences in Forest Road Assessment Factors Using the Analytic Hierarchy
           Process (AHP)

    • Authors: Selcuk Gumus
      First page: 165
      Abstract: Many factors, with differing priority ratios, need to be assessed in the evaluation of forest roads. Stakeholder perceptions differ in the road assessment process and this research addresses those differences between academic and practitioner groups. The focus was on four main forest road assessment factor groups (technical, economic, environmental, and social) within 23 sub-factors to determine the priority ratios using the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) method. Stakeholder groups expressed different priority ratios, indicating varying perceptions of the importance of these factors: forest engineering academic staff identified technical specifications as the most important issue (with a ratio of 39.77%), while environmental issues were most important for forestry department academic staff, mechanical supply technical staff, and forest enterprise chiefs (with ratios of 41.79%, 39.95%, and 37.03%, respectively). Due to differences in stakeholder group perceptions, a participatory forest road assessment approach should be adopted.
      PubDate: 2017-05-11
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050165
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 166: Patch-Based Forest Change Detection from
           Landsat Time Series

    • Authors: M. Hughes, S. Kaylor, Daniel Hayes
      First page: 166
      Abstract: In the species-rich and structurally complex forests of the Eastern United States, disturbance events are often partial and therefore difficult to detect using remote sensing methods. Here we present a set of new algorithms, collectively called Vegetation Regeneration and Disturbance Estimates through Time (VeRDET), which employ a novel patch-based approach to detect periods of vegetation disturbance, stability, and growth from the historical Landsat image records. VeRDET generates a yearly clear-sky composite from satellite imagery, calculates a spectral vegetation index for each pixel in that composite, spatially segments the vegetation index image into patches, temporally divides the time series into differently sloped segments, and then labels those segments as disturbed, stable, or regenerating. Segmentation at both the spatial and temporal steps are performed using total variation regularization, an algorithm originally designed for signal denoising. This study explores VeRDET’s effectiveness in detecting forest change using four vegetation indices and two parameters controlling the spatial and temporal scales of segmentation within a calibration region. We then evaluate algorithm effectiveness within a 386,000 km2 area in the Eastern United States where VeRDET has overall error of 23% and omission error across disturbances ranging from 22% to 78% depending on agent.
      PubDate: 2017-05-11
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050166
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 167: Thinning of Beech Forests Stocking on Shallow
           Calcareous Soil Maintains Soil C and N Stocks in the Long Run

    • Authors: Javier Tejedor, Gustavo Saiz, Heinz Rennenberg, Michael Dannenmann
      First page: 167
      Abstract: Sustainable forest management should avoid disturbance and volatilization of the soil carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) stocks both under present and projected future climate. Earlier studies have shown that thinning of European beech forests induces a strong initial perturbation of the soil C and N cycles in shallow Rendzic Leptosol, which consists of lower soil N retention and strongly enhanced gaseous losses observed over several years. Persistence of these effects could decrease soil organic matter (SOM) levels and associated soil functions such as erosion protection, nutrient retention, and fertility. Therefore, we resampled untreated control and thinned stands a decade after thinning at sites representing both typical present day and projected future climatic conditions for European beech forests. We determined soil organic C and total N stocks, as well as δ13C and δ15N as integrators of changes in soil C and N cycles. Thinning did not alter these parameters at any of the sampled sites, indicating that initial effects on soil C and N cycles constitute short-term perturbations. Consequently, thinning may be considered a sustainable beech forest management strategy with regard to the maintenance of soil organic C and total N stocks both under present and future climate.
      PubDate: 2017-05-11
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050167
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 168: Drones as a Tool for Monoculture Plantation
           Assessment in the Steepland Tropics

    • Authors: Ethan Miller, Jonathan Dandois, Matteo Detto, Jefferson Hall
      First page: 168
      Abstract: Smallholder tree plantations are expanding in the steepland tropics due to demand for timber and interest in ecosystem services, such as carbon storage. Financial mechanisms are developing to compensate vegetation carbon stores. However, measuring biomass—necessary for accessing carbon funds—at small scales is costly and time-intensive. Therefore, we test whether low-cost drones can accurately estimate height and biomass in monoculture plantations in the tropics. We used Ecosynth, a drone-based structure from motion technique, to build 3D vegetation models from drone photographs. These data were filtered to create a digital terrain model (DTM) and digital surface model (DSM). Two different canopy height models (CHMs) from the Ecosynth DSM were obtained by subtracting terrain elevations from the Ecosynth DTM and a LIDAR DTM. We compared height and biomass derived from these CHMs to field data. Both CHMs accurately predicted the height of all species combined; however, the CHM from the LiDAR DTM predicted heights and biomass on a per-species basis more accurately. Height and biomass estimates were strong for evergreen single-stemmed trees, and unreliable for small leaf-off species during the dry season. This study demonstrates that drones can estimate plantation biomass for select species when used with an accurate DTM.
      PubDate: 2017-05-12
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050168
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 169: Reducing Reforestation Costs in Lebanon:
           Adaptive Field Trials

    • Authors: Garabet Haroutunian, David Chojnacky, Richard El Riachy, Cindy Chojnacky
      First page: 169
      Abstract: Lebanon’s Ministry of Environment initiated a project in 2009 to determine low-cost reforestation techniques for stone pine (Pinus pinea) and Lebanon cedar (Cedrus libani) for large-scale land rehabilitation activities in the arid Middle East. Irrigation (several techniques vs. no water), planting (8- to 18-month-old seedlings), seeding, and soil preparation methods were evaluated in three sets of adaptive management field trials. The aim was to reduce reforestation costs while still achieving sufficient regeneration. A key result for management was that non-irrigated seed planting of stone pine and possibly of Lebanon cedar showed promise for cost-effective reforestation and could be competitive with seedlings, given correct seed source and planting conditions. Stone pine seeds collected from nearby mother trees and planted without irrigation on sandy soil showed 35% survival for <600 USD/ha; seedlings planted without irrigation cost about 2500 USD/ha and achieved 50–70% survival (costs based on 800 seedlings/ha). Water supplements increased establishment costs over 2 years without concomitant improvements to survival. Future studies should evaluate how soil texture and soil preparation interact with other factors to affect seed germination and survival for each species.
      PubDate: 2017-05-17
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050169
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 170: Comparing Empirical and Semi-Empirical
           Approaches to Forest Biomass Modelling in Different Biomes Using Airborne
           Laser Scanner Data

    • Authors: Endre Hansen, Liviu Ene, Ernest Mauya, Zdeněk Patočka, Tomáš Mikita, Terje Gobakken, Erik Næsset
      First page: 170
      Abstract: Airborne laser scanner (ALS) data are used operationally to support field inventories and enhance the accuracy of forest biomass estimates. Modelling the relationship between ALS and field data is a fundamental step of such applications and the quality of the model is essential for the final accuracy of the estimates. Different modelling approaches and variable transformations have been advocated in the existing literature, but comparisons are few or non-existent. In the present study, two main approaches to modelling were compared: the empirical and semi-empirical approaches. Evaluation of model performance was conducted using a conventional evaluation criterion, i.e., the mean square deviation (MSD). In addition, a novel evaluation criterion, the model error (ME), was proposed. The ME was constructed by combining a MSD expression and a model-based variance estimate. For the empirical approach, multiple regression models were developed with two alternative transformation strategies: square root transformation of the response, and natural logarithmic transformation of both response and predictors. For the semi-empirical approach, a nonlinear regression of a power model form was chosen. Two alternative predictor variables, mean canopy height and top canopy height, were used separately. Results showed that the semi-empirical approach resulted in the smallest MSD in three of five study sites. The empirical approach resulted in smaller ME in the temperate and boreal biomes, while the semi-empirical approach resulted in smaller ME in the tropical biomes.
      PubDate: 2017-05-16
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050170
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 171: Performance of a Mobile Star Screen to Improve
           Woodchip Quality of Forest Residues

    • Authors: Christoph Huber, Huberta Kroisleitner, Karl Stampfer
      First page: 171
      Abstract: Low harvesting costs and increasing demand for forest-derived biomass led to an increased use of full-tree (FT) harvesting in steep terrain areas in Austria. Logging residues, as a by-product of FT harvesting, present an easily accessible bioenergy resource, but high portions of fine particles and contaminants like earth particles and stones make them a complex and difficult fuel, as they affect storage capability, conversion efficiency, or emission rates adversely. The present research focuses on the productivity and performance of a star screen, which was used to remove fine and oversize particles from previously chipped, fresh Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) logging residue woodchips. Three screen settings, which differed in terms of different rotation speeds of the fine star elements (1861 rpm, 2239 rpm, 2624 rpm) were analyzed. Time studies of the star screen were carried out to estimate screening productivity and costs. Furthermore, 115 samples were collected from all material streams, which were assessed for particle size distribution, calorific value, ash content, and component and elemental composition. Average productivity was 20.6 tonnes (t) per productive system hour (PSH15), corresponding to screening costs of 9.02 €/t. The results indicated that the screening of chipped logging residues with a star screen influenced material characteristics of the medium fraction, as it decreased the ash content, the incidence of fine particles, and the nutrient content. The different screen settings had a noticeable influence on the quality characteristics of the screening products. An increase of the rotation speed of the fine stars reduced screening costs per unit of screened material in the medium fraction, but also lowered screening quality.
      PubDate: 2017-05-17
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050171
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 172: Optimizing the Wood Value Chain in Northern
           Norway Taking Into Account National and Regional Economic Trade-Offs

    • Authors: Ulf Johansen, Adrian Werner, Vibeke Nørstebø
      First page: 172
      Abstract: As a consequence of past decades of extensive afforestation in Norway, mature forest volumes are increasing. National forestry politics call for sustainable and efficient resource usage and for increased regional processing. Regional policies seek to provide good conditions for such industries to be competitive and to improve regional value creation. We demonstrate how methods from operations research and regional macro-economics may complement each other to support decision makers in this process. The operations research perspective is concerned with finding an optimally designed wood value chain and an aggregated planning of its operations, taking a holistic perspective on strategic-tactical level. Using Input-Output analysis methods based on statistics and survey data, regional macro-economics helps to estimate each industry actor’s value creation and impact on society beyond immediate value chain activities. Combining these approaches in a common mathematical optimization model, a balance can be struck between industry/business and regional political interests. For a realistic case study from the northern part of coastal Norway, we explore this balance from several perspectives, investigating value chain profits, economic ripple effects and regional resource usage.
      PubDate: 2017-05-17
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050172
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 173: Earlywood and Latewood Widths of Picea
           chihuahuana Show Contrasting Sensitivity to Seasonal Climate

    • Authors: Citlalli Cabral-Alemán, Marín Pompa-García, Andrea Acosta-Hernández, José Zúñiga-Vásquez, Jesús Camarero
      First page: 173
      Abstract: The existence of endangered tree species in Mexico necessitates an understanding of their vulnerability to the predicted climate changes (warming and drying trends). In this study, the sensitivity to climate of earlywood (EW) and latewood (LW) widths of the threatened Picea chihuahuana was determined. The response of EW and LW to climate variables (maximum temperature, minimum temperature, precipitation, evaporation, and a drought index) was analyzed by means of correlation analysis using dendrochronology over the period of 1950–2015. EW and LW production were enhanced by cool and wet conditions during winter prior to the start of growing season. During the growing season, EW and LW production increased in response to cool spring and summer conditions, respectively; temperatures and year-round evaporation, excluding summer and the previous drought in the period prior to the growing season. EW was sensitive to seasonal drought, which is a concern considering the predicted aridification trends for the study area. These results provide further knowledge on the dendroecological potential of Picea chihuahuana.
      PubDate: 2017-05-18
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050173
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 174: Responses of Ground-Dwelling Invertebrates to
           Gap Formation and Accumulation of Woody Debris from Invasive Species,
           Wind, and Salvage LoggingRunning Title: Perry and Herms: Responses of
           Ground-Dwelling Invertebrates

    • Authors: Kayla Perry, Daniel Herms
      First page: 174
      Abstract: Natural and anthropogenic disturbances alter canopy structure, understory vegetation, amount of woody debris, and the litter and soil layers in forest ecosystems. These environmental changes impact forest communities, including ground-dwelling invertebrates that are key regulators of ecosystem processes. Variation in frequency, intensity, duration, and spatial scale of disturbances affect the magnitude of these environmental changes and how forest communities and ecosystems are impacted over time. We propose conceptual models that describe the dynamic temporal effects of disturbance caused by invasive insects, wind, and salvage logging on canopy gap formation and accumulation of coarse woody debris (CWD), and their impacts on ground-dwelling invertebrate communities. In the context of this framework, predictions are generated and their implications for ground-dwelling invertebrate communities are discussed.
      PubDate: 2017-05-18
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050174
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 175: Drought Influence over Radial Growth of
           Mexican Conifers Inhabiting Mesic and Xeric Sites

    • Authors: Marín Pompa-García, Marcos González-Cásares, Andrea Acosta-Hernández, Jesús Camarero, Milagros Rodríguez-Catón
      First page: 175
      Abstract: Drought is a major constraint of forest productivity and tree growth across diverse habitat types. In this study, we investigated the drought responses of four conifer species growing within two locations of differing elevation and climatic conditions in northern Mexico. Two species were selected at a mesic site (Cupressus lusitanica Mill., Abies durangensis Martínez) and the other two species were sampled at a xeric site (Pinus engelmannii Carr., Pinus cembroides Zucc.). Using a dendrochronological approach, we correlated the radial-growth series of each species and the climatic variables. All study species positively responded to wet-cool conditions during winter and spring. Despite the close proximity of species at a mesic site, A. durangensis had high responsiveness to hydroclimatic variability, but C. lusitanica was not responsive. At the xeric site, P. engelmannii and P. cembroides were very responsive to drought severity, differentiated only by the longer time scale of the response to accumulated drought of P. engelmannii. The responsiveness to hydroclimate and drought of these tree species seems to be modulated by site conditions, or by the functional features of each species that are still little explored. These findings indicate that differentiating between mesic and xeric habitats is a too coarse approach in diverse forests with a high topographic heterogeneity.
      PubDate: 2017-05-19
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050175
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 176: Branch Wood Decomposition of Tree Species in a
           Deciduous Temperate Forest in Korea

    • Authors: Sangsub Cha, Hee-Myung Chae, Sang-Hoon Lee, Jae-Kuk Shim
      First page: 176
      Abstract: Woody debris, which is supplied by branch litter, is an important component of forest ecosystems as it contains large quantities of organic matter and nutrients. We evaluated changes in branch wood dry weight and nutrient content of six common species (Fraxinus rhynchophylla, Pinus densiflora, Prunus sargentii, Quercus mongolica, Acer pseudosieboldianum, and Symplocos chinensis for. pilosa) in a deciduous temperate forest in Korea for 40 months. Branch wood disk samples 1.4–1.6 cm thick were cut, and mass loss was measured over time using the litterbag method. No significant differences in mass loss were recorded among the six tree species. Further, mass loss was negatively correlated with initial lignin concentration and positively correlated with both initial cellulose concentration and wood density for each species. Species with high wood cellulose content had high wood density while the lignin content in wood was relatively low. Accordingly, cellulose contributed to wood density, creating a relatively lower lignin content, and the decreased lignin concentration increased the wood decomposition rate.
      PubDate: 2017-05-19
      DOI: 10.3390/f8050176
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 5 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 121: Epidemiological History of Cypress Canker
           Disease in Source and Invasion Sites

    • Authors: Roberto Danti, Gianni Della Rocca
      First page: 121
      Abstract: Seiridium cardinale is a fungal pathogen responsible for pandemic cypress canker disease (CCD). The fungus has shown the ability to infect different hosts in many areas throughout the globe, but its spread and impact were favored by conducive environmental conditions. The most severe epidemics were reported in California and the Mediterranean, the former considered the source area of the pathogen from which the Mediterranean infestation have originated. Here we reconstruct the epidemiological history of the disease in California and the Mediterranean. Evolution of the disease in the two contrasting areas was weighed in relation to differences between the two environments in terms of climate, landscape properties, and adopted management practices. In addition, differences emerged among the source and invasive populations in terms of genetic and phenotypic variability, structure, and mode of reproduction allow a few comments to be made about the environmental implications and related quarantine of new introductory events.
      PubDate: 2017-04-15
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040121
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 122: Volume and Carbon Estimates for the Forest
           Area of the Amhara Region in Northwestern Ethiopia

    • Authors: Kibruyesfa Sisay, Christopher Thurnher, Beyene Belay, Gerald Lindner, Hubert Hasenauer
      First page: 122
      Abstract: Sustainable forest management requires a continuous assessment of the forest conditions covering the species distribution, standing tree volume as well as volume increment rates. Forest inventories are designed to record this information. They, in combination with ecosystem models, are the conceptual framework for sustainable forest management. While such management systems are common in many countries, no forest inventory system and/or modeling tools for deriving forest growth information are available in Ethiopia. This study assesses, for the first time, timber volume, carbon, and Net Primary Production (NPP) of forested areas in the Amhara region of northwestern Ethiopia by combining (i) terrestrial inventory data, and (ii) land cover classification information. The inventory data were collected from five sites across the Amhara region (Ambober, Gelawdiwos, Katassi, Mahiberesilasse and Taragedam) covering three forest types: (i) forests, (ii) shrublands (exclosures) and (ii) woodlands. The data were recorded on 198 sample plots and cover diameter at breast height, tree height, and increment information. In order to extrapolate the local terrestrial inventory data to the whole Amhara region, a digital land cover map from the Amhara’s Bureau of Agriculture was simplified into (i) forest, (ii) shrubland, and (iii) woodland. In addition, the forest area is further stratified in five elevation classes. Our results suggest that the forest area in the Amhara region covers 2% of the total land area with an average volume stock of 65.7 m3·ha−1; the shrubland covers 27% and a volume stock of 3.7 m3·ha−1; and the woodland covers 6% and an average volume stock of 27.6 m3·ha−1. The corresponding annual volume increment rates are 3.0 m3·ha−1, for the forest area; 1.0 m3·ha−1, for the shrubland; and 1.2 m3·ha−1, for the woodland. The estimated current total volume stock in the Amhara region is 59 million m3.
      PubDate: 2017-04-15
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040122
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 123: Look Down to See What’s Up: A Systematic
           Overview of Treefall Dynamics in Forests

    • Authors: Jessie C. Buettel, Stefania Ondei, Barry W. Brook
      First page: 123
      Abstract: The study of treefall and its after-effects is a common theme in studies of forest structure and local dynamics, yet its value as descriptor of broader-scale ecological dynamics is rarely explored. Here we synthesize the most highly cited literature on treefalls, from 1985 to 2016 (in three-year blocks), highlighting the importance of the causes, characteristics and consequences of such events. We then ask how this knowledge might contribute to the broader conceptual model of forest dynamics, and develop two conceptual models, which we use to illustrate both the classic and alternative views of how forests ‘work’. Treefalls are one of the few ‘integrating’ attributes of forests, because of their ubiquity and longevity, and therefore can inform a variety of processes (e.g., tree mortality, turnover rates, structural impacts, recruitment, and fire frequency) due to their impacts occurring simultaneously over space (patterns), and time (legacy effects). The substantial knowledge that already exists on localized treefall dynamics should be combined with more integrative approaches to studying forest ecosystems, to investigate landscape-scale patterns of treefall and reconstruct past disturbance events.
      PubDate: 2017-04-17
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040123
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 124: Distribution of Soil Organic Carbon in
           Riparian Forest Soils Affected by Frequent Floods (Southern Québec,

    • Authors: Diane Saint-Laurent, Vernhar Gervais-Beaulac, Roxane Paradis, Lisane Arsenault-Boucher, Simon Demers
      First page: 124
      Abstract: Measuring soil organic carbon (SOC) in riparian forest soils affected by floods is crucial for evaluating their concentration and distribution along hydrological gradients (longitudinal and transversal). Hydromorphological factors (e.g., sedimentation vs. erosion, size of floodplain, flood recurrence) may be the cause of major variations in the concentration of organic matter and SOC in soils and could have a direct impact on C levels in soil profiles. For this study, SOC concentrations were assessed in riparian soils collected along transects perpendicular to the riverbanks which cross through inundated and non-inundated zones. Other soil properties (e.g., acidity, nitrogen, texture, bulk density) that may affect the concentration of SOC were also considered. The main purpose of this study was to assess SOC concentrations in soils subjected to flooding with those outside the flood zones, and also measure various soil properties (in surface soils and at various depths ranging from 0 to 100 cm) for each selected area. Across the various areas, SOC shows marked differences in concentration and spatial distribution, with the lowest values found in mineral soils affected by successive floods (recurrence of 0–20 years). SOC at 0–20 cm in depth was significantly lower in active floodplains (Tukey HSD test), with average values of 2.29 ± 1.64% compared to non-inundated soils (3.83 ± 2.22%). The proportion of C stocks calculated in soils (inundated vs. non-inundated zones) was significantly different, with average values of 38.22 ± 10.40 and 79.75 ± 29.47 t·ha−1, respectively. Flood frequency appears to be a key factor in understanding the low SOC concentrations in floodplain soils subjected to high flood recurrence (0–20 years).
      PubDate: 2017-04-19
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040124
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 125: REDD+ Contribution to Well-Being and Income Is
           Marginal: The Perspective of Local Stakeholders

    • Authors: William Sunderlin, Claudio de Sassi, Andini Ekaputri, Mara Light, Christy Pratama
      First page: 125
      Abstract: In addition to being a global strategy for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from tropical deforestation, Reducing Emission from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD+) intends to protect and improve the well-being and income of local stakeholders. The intention is to provide livelihood support in exchange for local stakeholder involvement in protecting forests. Eleven years after the launch of REDD+ at COP 11 in Montreal, the degree of success in meeting well-being and income goals is examined in six countries (Brazil, Peru, Cameroon, Tanzania, Indonesia, Vietnam) at 22 initiatives, 149 villages, and approximately 4000 households through a counter-factual approach. Half the villages and households are inside and half are outside the sphere of REDD+. Measurements are made at two points in time (2010–2012, and 2013–2014). This paper focuses on measurement of the subjective perception of local stakeholders. The study finds that REDD+ has not contributed significantly to perceived well-being and income sufficiency, in spite of the fact that most households have not only engaged with REDD+ interventions, but view them favorably. REDD+’s limited achievement to date is due to unavailability of funding, among other obstacles. Recommendations are made for enhanced attention to well-being and income sufficiency in the event that REDD+ eventually takes off.
      PubDate: 2017-04-19
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040125
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 126: Unsustainability Risk Causality in a Private
           Industrial Forest: An Institutional Analysis of Factors Affecting Stand
           Ecosystem Services in Kochi Prefecture, Japan

    • Authors: Dennis Gain, Tsunemi Watanabe
      First page: 126
      Abstract: Much research in recent years has analyzed the ecosystem service aspect of forests, while highlighting the need for sustainable forests. Forest management mechanisms at an inter-institutional level in Japan have been identified to hinder the implementation of forest management that is focused on the equal production of ecosystem services. This study presents an institutional analysis of unsustainability risk causality in a private industrial forest in Kochi Prefecture, Japan, from an ecosystem perspective incorporating common ecosystem service hazards that affect the sustainability functions of forests. This was performed with the aim to offer a basis for a less complicated analysis of ecosystem service hazards in industrial forests and to provide causal clarity at different institution levels. It was found that due to Japan’s systematic top-down forest management approach with the law at the top, vertical relationships cause direct and indirect negative horizontal relationships at each institutional level. To mitigate vertical and horizontal effects, institutional adaptions must be performed to address a combination of satisfier and hygiene factors. Under current conditions of non-enforceable forest policy, objectives and decisions regarding policy and management instruments at the national level must be integrated. This requires effective and adaptive multi-level institutional governance.
      PubDate: 2017-04-19
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040126
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 127: Sydowia polyspora Dominates Fungal Communities
           Carried by Two Tomicus Species in Pine Plantations Threatened by Fusarium

    • Authors: E. Muñoz-Adalia, Antonio Sanz-Ros, Juan Flores-Pacheco, Jarkko Hantula, Julio Diez, Eeva Vainio, Mercedes Fernández
      First page: 127
      Abstract: Bark beetles (Coleoptera, Scolytinae) carry a diverse filamentous fungal community sometimes acting as vectors or carriers of phytopathogens. In this study, mycobiota carried by two Tomicus species (Tomicus piniperda and Tomicus destruens) were investigated through (i) morphological and molecular identification of taxa; (ii) taxonomic richness, diversity, evenness, dominance and phoresy indices; (iii) ecological network analysis and (iv) statistical co-occurrence analysis. The studied mycobiota were formed by eleven taxa and showed a moderate fungal diversity with low evenness. The fungus Sydowia polyspora was significantly abundant and dominated the community. All the fungal taxa were randomly associated. Both insect species (T. piniperda and T. destruens) were collected from plantations of Pinus radiata infected by Fusarium circinatum. The ecological factors that could drive community ecology and phoretic links between fungi and bark beetles are discussed.
      PubDate: 2017-04-20
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040127
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 128: Long-Term Susceptibility of Even- and
           Uneven-Aged Northern Hardwood Stands to Partial Windthrow

    • Authors: Philippe Nolet, Martin Béland
      First page: 128
      Abstract: While uneven-aged silviculture may appear preferable to even-aged silviculture in terms of stand susceptibility to windthrow (major wind damage), the scientific evidence is equivocal on this issue, because the two systems do not operate over the same time frame. The goal of this study was to evaluate the windthrow susceptibility of even- and uneven-aged stands over a 100-year period. Susceptibility to windthrow of North American hardwood stands was evaluated by coupling a stand growth model (Forest Vegetation Simulator, or FVS) to stem windthrow probability equations from the literature. This coupling was straightforward given that FVS provides the diameter at breast height (DBH) of each tree within a stand over the simulation period. Windthrow susceptibility equations also use DBH to calculate stem windthrow probability. Our results show that average loss due to windthrow under uneven-aged management can be twice that observed under even-aged management at moderate wind severity for sugar maple-dominated stands. This result should be interpreted with caution because of the impossibility in our simulations of considering differences in tree form development between the two approaches. Nevertheless, this study clearly shows that even-/uneven-aged silviculture comparisons should be made on a long-term basis since uneven-aged stands are continuously susceptible to windthrow, while even-aged stands tend to be little affected by windthrow in their early developmental stages.
      PubDate: 2017-04-20
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040128
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 129: Critical Habitat Elements, with an Emphasis on
           Coarse Woody Debris, Associated with Ant Presence or Absence in the Moist
           Cold Sub-Boreal Forests of the Interior of British Columbia

    • Authors: Robert J. Higgins, Michael G. Gillingham, B. Staffan Lindgren
      First page: 129
      Abstract: Given both the ubiquity and ecological roles described for ants in British Columbia, an understanding of the habitat elements critical to predicting their presence is desirable. We used logistic regression to model the presence and absence of ants in sub-boreal lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta var. latifolia Engelm. ex S. Watson) forests of west-central British Columbia (BC). Methodological emphasis was placed on the association between ants and coarse woody debris (CWD) because of a high degree of utilization of this resource for nesting. Five species of ants, Camponotus herculeanus (L.), Formica aserva Forel, F. neorufibarbis Emery, Leptothorax muscorum (Nylander), and Myrmica alaskensis Wheeler, comprised approximately 90% of all captures in samples of CWD within five seral ages (2–3, 8–10, 13–15, 23–25 years post-harvest, and non-harvested stands). Seral age, presence of other ant colonies of the same species, decay class of CWD, its surface area, and whether the wood was downed woody debris (DWD) or a stump, were significant variables affecting ant presence or absence. These results are explained in the context of ant species autecology as it relates to living in cool climates.
      PubDate: 2017-04-20
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040129
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 130: Urbanization Drives SOC Accumulation, Its
           Temperature Stability and Turnover in Forests, Northeastern China

    • Authors: Chang Zhai, Wenjie Wang, Xingyuan He, Wei Zhou, Lu Xiao, Bo Zhang
      First page: 130
      Abstract: Global urbanization is a vital process shaping terrestrial ecosystems but its effects on forest soil carbon (C) dynamics are still not well defined. To clarify the effects of urbanization on soil organic carbon (SOC) variation, 306 soil samples were collected and analyzed under two urban–rural gradients, defined according to human disturbance time and ring road development in Changchun, northeast China. Forest SOC showed a linear increase with increasing human disturbance time from year 1900 to 2014 (13.4 g C m−2 year−1), and a similar trend was found for the ring road gradient. Old-city regions had the longest SOC turnover time and it increased significantly with increasing urbanization (p = 0.011). Along both urban–rural gradients SOC stability toward temperature variation increased with increasing urbanization, meaning SOC stability in old-city regions was higher than in new regions. However, none of the urban–rural gradients showed marked changes in soil basal respiration rate. Both Pearson correlation and stepwise regression proved that these urbanization-induced SOC patterns were closely associated with landscape forest (LF) proportion and soil electrical conductivity (EC) changes in urban–rural gradients, but marginally related with tree size and compositional changes. Overall, Changchun urbanization-induced SOC accumulation was 60.6–98.08 thousand tons, accounting for 12.8–20.7% of the total forest C biomass sequestration. Thus, China’s rapid urbanization-induced SOC sequestration, stability and turnover time, should be fully estimated when evaluating terrestrial C balance.
      PubDate: 2017-04-20
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040130
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 131: Red Alder-Conifer Stands in Alaska: An Example
           of Mixed Species Management to Enhance Structural and Biological

    • Authors: Robert Deal, Ewa Orlikowska, David D’Amore, Paul Hennon
      First page: 131
      Abstract: There is worldwide interest in managing forests to improve biodiversity, enhance ecosystem services and assure long-term sustainability of forest resources. An increasingly important goal of forest management is to increase stand diversity and improve wildlife and aquatic habitat. Well-planned silvicultural systems containing a mixture of broadleaf-conifer species have potential to enhance stand diversity and provide other ecosystem services earlier than typical even-aged conifer plantations. Here, we use the example of mixed Sitka spruce/western hemlock and red alder in young, managed stands in southeast Alaska to achieve these goals. We briefly describe the silvics of Sitka spruce, western hemlock and red alder plantations as pure conifer stands or pure broadleaf stands. Then, we synthesize studies of mixed red alder-Sitka spruce/western hemlock stands in southeast Alaska and present their potential for improving stand structural complexity, biodiversity and other ecosystem services over pure conifer forests. Finally, we discuss some of the opportunities and potential tradeoffs for managing mixed broadleaf-conifer stands for providing a number of natural resources and the influence of these broadleaf-conifer forests on ecosystem linkages and processes.
      PubDate: 2017-04-21
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040131
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 132: Tree Height-Diameter Relationships in the
           Alpine Treeline Ecotone Compared with Those in Closed Forests on Changbai
           Mountain, Northeastern China

    • Authors: Xiaoyu Wang, Dapao Yu, Shoule Wang, Bernard J. Lewis, Wangming Zhou, Li Zhou, Limin Dai, Jing-Pin Lei, Mai-He Li
      First page: 132
      Abstract: Height-diameter relationship is one of the most important stature characteristics of trees. It will change with climatic conditions because height and diameter growth displays different sensitivities to climatic factors such as temperature. Detecting and understanding changes in the stature of trees growing along altitudinal gradients up to their upper limits can help us to better understand the adaptation strategy of trees under global warming conditions. On Changbai Mountain in northeastern China, height-diameter datasets were collected for 2723 Erman’s birch (Betula ermanii Cham.) in the alpine treeline ecotone in 2006 and 2013, and for 888 Erman’s birch, spruce (Picea jezoensis Siebold & Zucc. Carr.), larch (Larix olgensis A. Henry), and fir (Abies nephrolepis Trautv. ex Maxim.) along an altitudinal gradient below the alpine treeline in 2006. These datasets were utilized to explore both changes in the stature of birch at the alpine treeline over time and variations in tree stature of different tree species across altitudes at a given time point (2006). Results showed that birch saplings (<140 cm in height) became stunted while birches with a height of >140 cm became more tapered in the alpine treeline ecotone. The stature of birch along the altitudinal gradient became more tapered from 1700 to 1900 m above see level (a.s.l.) and then became more stunted from 1900 to 2050 m a.s.l., with 1900 m a.s.l. being the altitudinal inflection point in this pattern. The treeline birch, due to its great temperature magnitude of distribution, displayed higher stature-plasticity in terms of its height-diameter ratio than the lower elevation species studied. The stature of birch is strongly modulated by altitude-related temperature but also co-influenced by other environmental factors such as soil depth and available water, wind speed, and duration and depth of winter snow cover. The high stature-plasticity of birch makes it fare better than other species to resist and adapt to, as well as to survive and develop in the harsh alpine environment.
      PubDate: 2017-04-21
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040132
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 133: Assessing Impacts of Wood Utilisation
           Scenarios for a Lithuanian Bioeconomy: Impacts on Carbon in Forests and
           Harvested Wood Products and on the Socio-Economic Performance of the
           Forest-Based Sector

    • Authors: Gediminas Jasinevičius, Marcus Lindner, Pieter Verkerk, Marius Aleinikovas
      First page: 133
      Abstract: Climate change and transition towards a bioeconomy are seen as both challenges and opportunities for the forest-based sector in Europe. Transition towards a bioeconomy will in most cases rely on intensified use of renewable resources and/or advancement in technology. However, how can the intensified use of renewable resources be combined with climate change mitigation measures to increase carbon sinks in the forest-based sector? Additionally, what are the possible socio-economic and environmental impacts of intensified wood use? In this study, we examined the impacts of increased wood utilisation in Lithuania. The objective of this study was to assess the effects of increased domestic wood utilisation on: (i) employment; (ii) the economic performance of the sector; (iii) carbon in forest biomass and soil; and (iv) carbon in harvested wood products (HWP). The system boundaries were set in accordance with international greenhouse gas reporting to include only domestic wood flows. We assessed alternative wood utilisation scenarios using a forest resource model and a tool to assess sustainability impacts of (wood) value chains, using country specific data on wood (carbon) flows. Our results indicate that increased wood use could lead to trade-offs between six selected indicators. Opportunities for employment and the economic performance of the forest-based sector improved in all scenarios due to increased wood utilisation. However, when forest fellings increased, the carbon stored in forests decreased, the carbon stored in HWP increased, but overall the total carbon stored in forests and HWP decreased. When considering also additional substitution effects until the year 2100, the scenario with reduced wood exports generated larger total climate change mitigation effects than the baseline. Our results suggest that increased wood utilisation might support Lithuania’s bioeconomy through increased socio-economic benefits. National positive climate change mitigation effects could be gained only if additional actions to utilise more domestic wood for long-life HWP will be taken.
      PubDate: 2017-04-22
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040133
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 134: Forest Company Dependencies and Impacts on
           Ecosystem Services: Expert Perceptions from China

    • Authors: Minli Wan, Dalia D’Amato, Anne Toppinen, Mika Rekola
      First page: 134
      Abstract: Global awareness of sustainability issues is growing rapidly, and business organizations are called to address wider social and environmental concerns along with economic performance. However, limited systematic knowledge exists on the interactions between forest industries and natural ecosystems. We thus investigated the role of ecosystem services in the context of China’s forest sector. A qualitative research approach was used to elicit company external expert viewpoints on the topic. Our analysis focused on three themes: (1) forest company dependencies and impacts on ecosystem services; (2) business risks arising from dependencies and impacts; and (3) risk response strategies. The interviewed 20 experts identified a series of forest company dependencies and impacts (including negative and positive impacts) on several ecosystem services. The extent of dependencies and impacts is largely influenced by the business portfolio of the company. The perceived business risks include intense competition and the consequently increasing price for natural resources, which would affect forest company business plans, costs and outputs. The suggested strategies for turning risks into opportunities include outsourcing wood, changing production focus, promoting industrial upgrading and implementing regular assessments of corporate dependencies and impacts on ecosystem services. The findings of our study can guide companies’ decision-making in managing forest ecosystems sustainably.
      PubDate: 2017-04-22
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040134
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 135: Chemical and Biochemical Properties of Soils
           Developed from Different Lithologies in Northwestern Spain (Galicia)

    • Authors: Valeria Cardelli, Stefania Cocco, Alberto Agnelli, Serenella Nardi, Diego Pizzeghello, Maria Fernández-Sanjurjo, Giuseppe Corti
      First page: 135
      Abstract: Physical and chemical soil properties are generally correlated with the parent material, as its composition may influence the pedogenetic processes, the content of nutrients, and the element biocycling. This research studied the chemical and biochemical properties of the A horizon from soils developed on different rocks like amphibolite, serpentinite, phyllite, and granite under a relatively similar climatic regime from Galicia (northwest Spain). In particular, the effect of the parent material on soil evolution, organic carbon sequestration, and the hormone-like activity of humic and fulvic acids were tested. Results indicated that all the soils were scarcely fertile because of low concentrations of available P, exchangeable Ca (except for the soils on serpentinite and phyllite), and exchangeable K, but sequestered relevant quantities of organic carbon. The scarce soil fertility was common to all soils independently of the parent material, and we attributed this similarity to the pedogenetic pressure induced by the climatic conditions. Also, the hormone-like activity of humic and fulvic acids, similar for all the soils, was probably due to pedogenesis. We hypothesized that the hormone-like activity of the humic substances helps growth and diffusion of vegetation in low fertile soils and, consequently, soil organic carbon sequestration too.
      PubDate: 2017-04-22
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040135
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 136: Screening of Date Palm (Phoenix dactylifera
           L.) Cultivars for Salinity Tolerance

    • Authors: Latifa Al Kharusi, Dekoum Assaha, Rashid Al-Yahyai, Mahmoud Yaish
      First page: 136
      Abstract: Date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) is a major fruit tree in the Middle East and it is a plant considered to be tolerant to a variety of abiotic stresses, including salinity. However, the physiological basis of its salinity tolerance is not fully known. The objective of this study was to screen Omani date palm cultivars for tolerance or susceptibility to salt stress. Seedlings from 10 commercially important date palm cultivars were subjected to 240 mM NaCl, and several physiological parameters related to salinity tolerance traits were evaluated upon treatment. The cultivars were divided into two groups based on the dry weight (DW) of their leaf and root tissues, a parameter which was used as an indication of healthy growth. The results revealed that photosynthesis, electrolyte leakage (EL), and the shoot K+/Na+ ratio were all significantly reduced in the susceptible cultivars. In addition, the relative water content was higher in the tolerant cultivars in comparison with the susceptible ones. These results suggest that although date palm is tolerant to high salinity, there is variation in tolerance among different cultivars. Shoot Na+ exclusion, photosynthesis, and membrane stability are apparently the main determinants of tolerance and can be used in salinity tolerance screening of date palm. The results have shown new very tolerant cultivars (Manoma and Umsila) that could serve as genetic resources for improved date palm tolerance to salinity.
      PubDate: 2017-04-22
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040136
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
  • Forests, Vol. 8, Pages 137: Traditional and Novel Indicators of Climate
           Change Impacts on European Forest Trees

    • Authors: Filippo Bussotti, Martina Pollastrini
      First page: 137
      Abstract: The concern for the fate of forest ecosystems under climate change demands the development of a prompt and effective system for detecting the impacts of pressure factors, such as rising temperatures, drought conditions, and extreme climatic events. In ongoing European monitoring programs, the health condition of trees is only assessed visually as a matter of course and there is limited evidence that enhanced crown defoliation implies physiological disturbance and reduced tree growth. The progress of the research makes it possible to apply methods developed in experimental conditions in forests for the fast and reliable assessment of impacts and of stress conditions. In this review, we analyze the most promising indicators of tree and forest health (at individual plant and ecosystem levels) for their potential application in forest ecosystems and their ability to support and integrate the traditional visual assessment, provide information on influential factors, and improve the prediction of stand dynamics and forest productivity.
      PubDate: 2017-04-24
      DOI: 10.3390/f8040137
      Issue No: Vol. 8, No. 4 (2017)
School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences
Heriot-Watt University
Edinburgh, EH14 4AS, UK
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