Soil bulk density changes caused by mechanized harvesting: A case study in central Appalachia
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Forest Products Journal. 55(11): 37-40.
A mechanized harvesting system consisting of a feller-buncher and a grapple skidder was examined to quantify soil bulk density changes in a central Appalachian hardwood forest site. Soil bulk density was measured using a nuclear gauge pre-harvest and post-harvest systematically across the harvest unit and on transects across skid trails. Bulk density also was measured in the skid trails in a subset of the transects after the first 10 loaded machine passes. Post-harvest soil bulk density of 954.4 kg/m3 was not significantly different from the pre-harvest bulk density of 925.2 kg/m3 across the site. Grapple skidding resulted in significant bulk density changes in the skid trails. Results suggest that most of the soil bulk density changes in the skid trails occurred after the first loaded machine pass. Our findings suggest that the use of tracked feller-bunchers to fell and bunch the trees results in the minimum changes to soil bulk density across a harvest site.
Wang, Jingxin; LeDoux, Chris B.; Edwards, Pam; Jones, Mark. 2005. Soil bulk density changes caused by mechanized harvesting: A case study in central Appalachia. Forest Products Journal. 55(11): 37-40.