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Quantifying the Risk of Mortality and Damage to Advance Regeneration within the Path of Harvesting Equipment

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Given the challenges to regenerating white pine, thinning the overstory to release natural advance regeneration has obvious advantages. However, we document here that harvesting traffic poses a substantial threat to advance regeneration, with an 85% chance of mortality for trees in the path of harvesting equipment. Tree size and vigor had no impact on the chance of survival and trees up to 16 ft in height were lost. The risks of mortality or damage did not increase with proximity to harvested trees but did drop off sharply with distance from harvesting equipment tracks. The results indicate that losses due to felling alone were minor and that logging damage to advance regeneration during an overstory harvest could be reduced if harvesting traffic was better contained.

Keywords: advance regeneration; forwarder; harvesting damage; white pine

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2008-12-01

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  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Northern Journal of Applied Forestry covers northeastern, midwestern, and boreal forests in the United States and Canada.
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