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Perceptions of Foresters of Wind Damage in Mississippi Forests

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A survey of registered foresters in Mississippi was conducted to gauge their perception of various factors that influence stand damage resulting from hurricanes. A review of the literature suggests that tree diameter, height, age, and species are influential factors on a stand's susceptibility to wind damage. In addition, stand density, recent management activities, soil conditions, recent weather conditions, and the proximity to open areas are also noted in the literature as influential factors on these site-specific studies. Although scientific opinion on the importance of these factors varies, the perceptions of foresters familiar with strong wind events provide critical feedback that is often consistent with research results. The perceptions of foresters are valuable because they are derived from direct or indirect field experience, and they can be helpful in designing more effective research studies, in developing organizational policies, and in broadening our understanding of what makes a forest more resistant to hurricane-related damage. The results of our survey were generally consistent with the available literature, but some differences were found between the registered foresters' perceptions of hurricane damage and factors suggested by site-specific studies previously reported in the literature.
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Keywords: breakage; hardwood; pine; wind damage; windthrow

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2010-08-01

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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 Southern Journal of Applied Forestry covers an area from Virginia and Kentucky south to as far west as Oklahoma and east Texas.
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