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dc.contributor.authorOtt, Robert A.
dc.date.accessioned2018-08-08T19:03:23Z
dc.date.available2018-08-08T19:03:23Z
dc.date.issued1997
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/11122/9497
dc.descriptionThesis (Ph.D.) University of Alaska Fairbanks, 1997
dc.description.abstractWind disturbance in forests of southeast Alaska is poorly understood. Dynamics of canopy gaps, formed primarily by wind, were investigated in the western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla)/blueberry (Vaccinium spp.)/shield fern (Dryopteris austriaca) plant association in northern southeast Alaska; twenty gaps were sampled at each of 3 sites. Gaps comprised about 9% of the forest area. The majority of gaps were $<$50 m$\sp2$ in area, had a diameter-to-height (D/H) $<$0.50, were created from the death of 1 or 2 gapmakers, and had experienced gap expansion. Emulating the small-scale natural disturbance regime would be best achieved if single tree selection and small group selection cuts were administered within a stand. Diffuse light levels were greatest and most variable at both the shrub and herb layers in canopy gaps, and lowest and least variable under closed canopy forest. Shrub layer light levels were positively associated with mean and median canopy gap areas. Herb layer light levels, however, were determined by the amount of light interception at the shrub layer and not by canopy gap size. Most species were robust in terms of their light requirements compared to the range of light conditions present in the understory. Sorenson Index values indicated that gaps and closed canopy forest generally were very similar in species composition. Seedling heights suggest that western hemlock and Sitka spruce seedlings benefit from the presence of canopy gaps. However, the ability of Sitka spruce to maintain itself through gap-phase replacement is limited. Techniques are needed that allow forest managers to interpret wind patterns in remote locations, at both site- and landscape-levels, and across complex topography. I demonstrated the use of circular data analysis of treefall directions as a technique to investigate wind flows at the site-level. I also demonstrated the feasibility of mapping wind flows across a large landscape of complex terrain in southeast Alaska using flagged trees, treefall directions of large-scale natural blowdowns, and treefall directions of blowdowns associated with clearcuts.
dc.subjectEcology
dc.subjectForestry
dc.titleNatural disturbance at the site and landscape levels in temperate rainforests of southeast Alaska
dc.typeThesis
dc.type.degreephd
dc.contributor.chairJuday, Glenn Patrick
refterms.dateFOA2020-03-06T01:27:43Z


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