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Title: Decaying wood and tree regeneration in the Acadian Forest of Maine, USA

Author: Weaver, Jamie K.; Kenefic, Laura S.; Seymour, Robert S.; Brissette, John C.

Year: 2009

Publication: Forest Ecology and Management, Volume 257, Issue 7, 22 March 2009, Pages 1623-1628

Abstract: We examined the effect of management history on the availability of decayed downed wood and the use of downed wood as a regeneration substrate in mixed-species stands in the Acadian Forest of Maine. Regeneration of red spruce (Picea rubens Sarg.), eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis (L.) Carr.), balsam fir (Abies balsamea L. Mill), and red maple (Acer rubrum L.) was quantified. Treatments included variants of selection cutting, commercial clearcutting (unregulated harvesting), and no harvesting for >50 years (reference). Area of wood substrate (wood >= Decay Class III and >=10 cm on at least one end) was less in the commercial clearcut than in the reference; other treatments were not differentiated. Spruce and hemlock seedlings were found at higher densities on wood than paired forest floor plots of equal area, regardless of treatment. Conversely, fir and maple were less abundant on wood than forest floor plots in reference and selection treatments, but more or equally abundant on wood than forest floor plots in the commercial clearcut. These findings suggest that silvicultural treatment affects both the availability of decayed downed wood and seedling-substrate relationships, and that forest management in the Acadian Region should consider availability of downed woody material.

Last Modified: 3/21/2009

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