Predicting stand damage and tree survival in burned forests in Catalonia (North-East Spain)

Jos? Gonz?lez; Antoni Trasobares; Marc Palah?; Timo Pukkala
October 2007
Annals of Forest Science (EDP Sciences);Oct2007, Vol. 64 Issue 7, p733
Academic Journal
The study developed models for predicting the post-fire tree survival in Catalonia. The models are appropriate for forest planning purposes. Two types of models were developed: a stand-level model to predict the degree of damage caused by a forest fire, and tree-level models to predict the probability of a tree to survive a forest fire. The models were based on forest inventory and fire data. The inventory data on forest stands were obtained from the second (1989?1990) and third (2000?2001) Spanish national forest inventories, and the fire data consisted of the perimeters of forest fires larger than 20 ha that occurred in Catalonia between the 2nd and 3rd measurement of the inventory plots. The models were based on easily measurable forest characteristics, and they permit the forest manager to predict the effect of stand structure and species composition on the expected damage. According to the stand level fire damage model, the relative damage decreases when the stand basal area or mean tree diameter increases. Conversely, the relative stand damage increases when there is a large variation in tree size, when the stand is located on a steep slope, and when it is dominated by pine. According to the tree level survival models, trees in stands with a high basal area, a large mean tree size and a small variability in tree diameters have a high survival probability. Large trees in dominant positions have the highest probability of surviving a fire. Another result of the study is the exceptionally good post-fire survival ability of Pinus pinea and Quercus suber. Pr?diction des dommages au peuplement et de la survie des arbres dans les for?ts br?l?es en Catalogne. L''?tude d?veloppe des mod?les pour pr?dire la survie des arbres apr?s feu en Catalogne. Les mod?les sont appropri?s ? des objectifs de planification en for?t. Deux types de mod?les ont ?t? d?velopp?s?: un mod?le au niveau des peuplements pour pr?dire le niveau des dommages caus?s par les feux de for?ts, et des mod?les arbre-centr?s pour pr?dire la probabilit? de survie ? un feu de for?t. Les mod?les sont bas?s sur les donn?es de l''inventaire des for?ts et des feux. Les donn?es de l''inventaire des peuplements forestiers ont ?t? obtenues ? partir du deuxi?me (1989?1990) et du troisi?me (2000?2001) inventaire forestier espagnol, et les donn?es sur les feux proviennent de p?rim?tres de feux de for?ts sup?rieurs ? 20 ha qui se sont produits en Catalogne entre les deuxi?mes et troisi?mes mesures dans les placettes d''inventaire. Les mod?les sont bas?s sur des caract?ristiques facilement mesurables, et permettent au praticien forestier de pr?dire l''effet de la structure du peuplement et de la composition en esp?ces sur les d?g?ts. D''apr?s le mod?le de dommage au niveau peuplement, les d?g?ts diminuent lorsque la surface terri?re ou le diam?tre moyen des arbres augmente. Inversement, les d?g?ts augmentent en cas de forte variabilit? de dimension des arbres, quand le peuplement est localis? sur une pente forte ou quand il est principalement compos? de pins. Selon les mod?les de survie arbre-centr?s, les arbres de peuplements ? forte surface terri?re, forte dimension moyenne des arbres et faible variabilit? des diam?tres, pr?sente la plus forte probabilit? de survie au feu. Les grands arbres dominants pr?sentent la plus forte probabilit? de survivre au feu. Un autre r?sultat de cette ?tude est l''exceptionnelle capacit? de survie apr?s feu de Pinus pinea et Quercus suber.


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