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Application of Growth Models For Simulating Genetic Gain of Loblolly Pine

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A technique for predicting genetic gain in progeny tests using height-age models and stand simulations is presented for loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.). Periodic remeasurements for a block-plot open-pollinated progeny test are used to examine trends in height growth, selection differential, and percent gain in height and volume. Using the Chapman-Richards model and approximate F tests, significant differences among families were detected in asymptote and rate parameters but not for the shape parameter. Separate base-age invariant height-age equations were developed for each family to account for polymorphism associated with the rate parameter. Selection differential calculated from either observed or predicted heights exhibited similar trends although estimates from the height-age equations are consistently higher than obtained with observed height after age 5. Family rankings using the height-age models are consistent with those obtained using observed heights. Also, percent gain calculated from predicted heights is within 2% of the estimates obtained with observed heights at ages greater than 3 years. Differences in survival, height, and diameter were combined to examine trends in volume production associated with families. Predicted volume for each family was simulated using a bivariate distribution of height and diameter accounting for differences in height-growth patterns among families. Family rankings for volume are also closely correlated, resulting in two or three of the same families being selected using observed and predicted data. Selection differential obtained from simulated and observed volume fluctuates in rank producing a satisfactory trend based on predicted volume after age 5. Gain based on simulated volume tends to be slightly greater than gain based on observed volume. Estimates of percent gain obtained by reinitializing the simulations with quadratic mean dbh and residual trees per acre after thinning differed more from the observed trends than the unthinned simulations. For. Sci. 35(1):211-228.

Keywords: Pinus taeda L; height-age curves; percent gain; selection differential; simulations

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Vice President-Breeding and Research, International Forest Seed Company, P. O. Box 290, Odenville, AL 35120

Publication date: March 1, 1989

More about this publication?
  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2015 Impact Factor: 1.702
    Ranking: 16 of 66 in forestry

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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