Forest canopy recovery from the 1938 hurricane and subsequent salvage damage measured with airborne LiDAR
Abbreviated Journal Title
Remote Sens. Environ.
disturbance; ecosystem recovery; forest canopy; Harvard Forest; hurricane; land use; legacy; LiDAR; LISA; spatial autocorrelation; vertical structure; CENTRAL NEW-ENGLAND; DOUGLAS-FIR FORESTS; LAND-USE HISTORY; WAVE-FORM; LIDAR; SPATIAL ASSOCIATION; CATASTROPHIC WIND; LASER ALTIMETER; HEIGHT; PROFILES; HARDWOOD FOREST; NEW-HAMPSHIRE; Environmental Sciences; Remote Sensing; Imaging Science & Photographic; Technology
The structure of a forest canopy often reflects its disturbance history. Such signatures of past disturbances or legacies can influence bow the ecosystem functions across broad spatio-temporal scales. The 1938 hurricane and ensuing salvage operations which swept through New England represent the most recent large, infrequent disturbance (LID) in this region. Though devastating (downing similar to 70% of the timber at Harvard Forest), the disturbance was not indiscriminate-, it left behind a heterogeneous landscape comprised of different levels of canopy damage. We analyzed large-footprint LiDAR, from the Prospect Hill tract at Harvard Forest in central Massachusetts, to assess whether damage to the forest structure from the hurricane and subsequent timber extraction could be discerned after - 65 years. Differences in LiDAR-derived measures of canopy height and vertical diversity were a function of the degree of damage from the 1938 hurricane and the predominant tree species which is, in part, a function of land use history. Higher levels of damage corresponded to slightly shorter canopies with a less even vertical distribution of return from the ground to the top. In addition, differences in canopy topography as revealed by spatial autocorrelation of canopy top heights were found among the damage classes. Less disturbed stands were characterized by lower levels of local autocorrelation for canopy height and higher levels of vertical diversity of LiDAR returns. These differences in canopy structure reveal that the forest tract has not completely recovered from the 1938 LID and salvage regime, which may have implications on arboreal and understory habitat and other ecosystem functions. (c) 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Remote Sensing of Environment
"Forest canopy recovery from the 1938 hurricane and subsequent salvage damage measured with airborne LiDAR" (2007). Faculty Bibliography 2000s. 7783.