Scientists & Staff

Dr. John M. Kabrick

John Kabrick

Research Forester
202 ABNR Bldg., University of Missouri-Columbia
Columbia, MO, 65211-7260
Phone: 573-875-5341 x229

Contact John Kabrick

Current Research

I am investigating processes governing the regeneration and development of oak-dominated forests and woodlands and I am using the findings to develop practical, scientific, and ecologically based silvicultural prescriptions. Of particular interest are the interactions between the physical environment (e.g., geological parent material, landform position/aspect, soils, and hydrology) and forest vegetation dynamics; the relationship between site factors and oak decline and mortality; restoration of shortleaf pine and oak mixes; cumulative effects of even-age, uneven-age, and no-harvest management; and the natural and artificial regeneration of bottomland forests.

Research Interests

I am interested in developing and evaluating silvicultural systems for sustaining native flora and fauna communities in balance with traditional forest commodities. This includes quantifying the roles of disturbances (harvests and fire) and environmental conditions for creating and maintaining various forest and woodland structures over space and time. I also have an interest in developing models for examining the long-term consequences of silvicultural systems on the soil's ability to supply nutrients and water.

Why This Research is Important

Forest management is becoming more challenging because of the combination of changing societal expectations and evolving ecological perspectives. Consequently, public forest land management agencies are increasingly setting more complex objectives emphasizing more wholistic, system-level forest management including restoring and sustaining native forest and woodland communities. Moreover, private forest land owners are shifting their priorities to emphasize non-commodity forest values such as wildlife habitat. These changing expectations and evolving perspectives require developing and evaluating new management methods based upon basic silvicultural and ecological principles.


  • University of Wisconsin, Ph.D. Soil Science, 1995
  • Purdue University, M.S. Soil Science, 1991
  • University of Missouri, B.S.F. Forestry, 1988

Professional Organizations

  • Missouri Society Of American Foresters (2018 - 2019)
    Program Chair
  • Society of American Foresters (SAF)
  • Soil Science Society of America
  • Missouri Society Of American Foresters (2003 - 2013)
    Forest Science Coordinator

Awards & Recognition

  • The Karkhagne Award, 2018 For outstanding service to the profession of Forestry and to the Missouri Society of American Foresters
  • National Silviculture Award, 2017 For excellence in silviculture research

Featured Publications & Products

Publications & Products

National Research Highlights

Examples of mixedwood types in eastern North America: A) shortleaf pine – oak forest in southern Missouri (credit: Missouri Department of Conservation); B) white pine – red oak forest in southern Maine (credit: Justin Waskiewicz); C) spruce – fir – hardwood forest in Quebec (credit: Patricia Raymond); D) hemlock – hardwood forest in northern Wisconsin. Kate Gerndt.

Hardwood-Softwood Mixtures for Future Forests in Eastern North America: Assessing Suitability to Projected Climate Change

Year: 2016

Despite growing interest in management strategies for climate change adaptation, there are few methods for assessing the ability of stands to endure or adapt to projected future climates. Forest Service scientists developed a means for assigning climate “compatibility” and “adaptability” scores to stands for assessing the suitability of tree species for projected climate scenarios. They used these scores to determine if mixed hardwood-softwood stands or “mixedwoods” were better suited to projected future climates than pure hardwood or pure softwood stands.

Phenocam and Antenna on top of the pierce laboratory at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, NH. USDA Forest Service

“Smart Forests” Digital Environmental Sensors and Telecommunications Take Research to New Levels

Year: 2015

Scientific breakthroughs of the 21st century will be powered by tools that help researchers collect and manipulate massive datasets, visualize that data, and offer new ways of understanding the scientific processes behind that information. Forest Service scientists are taking a lead in developing a national Experimental Forests and Ranges “Smart Forests” Network. This network of wired forests uses digital environmental sensors, wireless communications, and new data visualization programs to create a powerful integrated research and monitoring program for the nation’s air, water, forest and rangeland resources.

Landscape photograph of the Missouri Ozark forests. Dan Dey, USDA Forest Service

Forest Management Guidelines Help Improve and Sustain Missouri's Forest Resources

Year: 2014

Missouri landowners and resource managers need state-of-the-art, science-based knowledge of forest management planning, silviculture, and best management practices to guide their stewardship and use of Missouri's 15.5 million acres of forestland. Forests contribute significantly to the state economy (more than $8 billion from forest industry alone), provide substantial job opportunities, produce clean air and water, act as playgrounds for recreation, serve as home to valued wildlife, and protect high levels of native biodiversity. Forest Service scientists and partners have produced "Missouri Forest Management Guidelines," as a comprehensive, science-based publication on forest management for sustainable multiple-use of Missouri's forests.

Last modified: Monday, June 17, 2019