Controlling coarse woody debris inventory quality: taper and relative size methods
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Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 38: 631-636.
Accurately measuring the dimensions of coarse woody debris (CWD) is critical for ensuring the quality of CWD estimates and, hence, for accurately estimating forest ecosystem attributes (e.g., CWD carbon stocks). To improve the quality of CWD dimensional measurements, the distribution of taper (ratio of change in diameter and length) and relative size (RS; ratio of length and large-end diameter) of CWD pieces across the US were examined. Additionally, an outlier identification technique was devcloped by predicting the median and interquartile range of taper and RS as a function of large-end diameter, length, and decay class by major species group. The median CWD taper and RS across the US were 1.268 cm/m and 0.280 m/cm, respectively, with notable outliers. The taper and RS outlier identification protocol rapidly identified nearly 3% of study observations as outliers. Incorporation of CWD taper and RS outlier identification protocols into field data recorders may allow efficient control of measurement errors during field inventories.
Woodall, C.W.; Westfall, J.A. 2008. Controlling coarse woody debris inventory quality: taper and relative size methods. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 38: 631-636.