Examination of Forest Recovery Scenarios in a Southern Appalachian Picea-Abies Forest
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This study contrasts various forest recovery scenarios in a Picea rubens Sarg. Abies fraseri (Pursh.) Poir. forest 20 years after the onset of Adelges picea Ratz. and tests them against a 10-year data set from an intensive catchment study in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Standing live biomass, increment, ingrowth, mortality and net change in live biomass are analysed by species and elevation based on inventory data gathered in 1993, 1998 and 2003 at a network of 50 permanent plots stratified along nine elevation bands (1700–1900 m). Total standing live biomass at the study site remained stable between inventories (~260 Mg ha–1). Betula showed little, if any, response to the recent set of catastrophic overstory disturbances. Biomass and increment of Picea increased somewhat; but overall, there is limited evidence that Picea is expanding. Abies showed significant increases in standing live biomass (from 3.3 to 12.7 Mg ha–1), increment (380 to 850 kg ha–1 year–1) and ingrowth (320 to 610 kg ha–1 year–1) over time. While some scenarios have not fully played out yet, at this time, total elimination of Abies is not indicated and there is considerable evidence to support the stable Picea and Abies scenario.
Moore, P.T., H. Van Miegroet, and N.S. Nicholas. 2008. Examination of forest recovery scenarios in a southern Appalachian Picea-Abies forest. Forestry 81(2): 183-194; Available on line: doi:10.1093/forestry/cpn013