Stand-age derived competition indices influence individual tree mortality model prediction for naturally occurring even-aged shortleaf pine stands

  • Authors: Saud, Pradip; Lynch, Thomas B.; Guldin, James M.; Shrestha, Sudip
  • Publication Year: 2022
  • Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
  • Source: Forests
  • DOI: 10.3390/f13020314

Abstract

To understand the influence of competition indices and post-thinning effects in predicting individual tree mortality, we developed two models, one without the effect of thinning and another, with the effect of thinning for naturally occurring even-aged natural shortleaf pine (Pinus echinata Mill.) stands in the Ozark and Ouachita National Forests in Oklahoma and Arkansas, USA. Over the period of 25 years, six re-measurements of an individual tree from each plot were collected between 1985 and 2014. The logistic function was used to model the probability of mortality for which the binary response variable was, ‘0’ for living and ‘1’ for dead trees, using iteratively weighted regression and mixed-effects model. Stand-age derived competition indices such as, the ratio of stand basal area to stand age (SBAG), ratio of individual diameter to stand age (DAG), and the quadratic mean diameter (QMD), were found significant in predicting the probability of mortality. These variables were also found to be effective in the thinning effect model. However, excluding the thinning variable resulted in better performance with the chi-square test based on mortality within mid-diameter classes. Thus, the mortality model suggests that over time, individual tree mortality is influenced more greatly by competition modified by stand age rather than by a post-thinning effect in even-aged naturally occurring shortleaf pine trees.

  • Citation: Saud, Pradip; Lynch, Thomas B.; Guldin, James M.; Shrestha, Sudip. 2022. Stand-age derived competition indices influence individual tree mortality model prediction for naturally occurring even-aged shortleaf pine stands. Forests. 13(2): 314. 18 p. https://doi.org/10.3390/f13020314.
  • Keywords: binary logistic model, mixed-effects model, tree mortality, survival, thinning effect, competition indices, individual tree, iteratively weighted regression, probability
  • Posted Date: February 23, 2022
  • Modified Date: February 28, 2022
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