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Articles containing the keyword 'age structure'.

Category: Research article

article id 1279, category Research article
Andreas Kreutz, Tuomas Aakala, Russell Grenfell, Timo Kuuluvainen. (2015). Spatial tree community structure in three stands across a forest succession gradient in northern boreal Fennoscandia. Silva Fennica vol. 49 no. 2 article id 1279. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.1279
Highlights: We studied the tree community spatial structure in three 1.2-ha plots representing naturally developed northern boreal forests of varying ages; Spatial structure showed little differences between the mid-successional, late-successional and old-growth stands; The occurrence of Picea abies relative to Betula spp. indicated a mosaic-like spatial assembly; Mosaics are likely maintained by species-specific replacement, not reciprocal replacement as thought earlier.
Development of species composition during succession is well studied in natural boreal forests, but empirical assessments of how within-stand spatial structure develops in late-successional stages are few. Here, we quantified spatial patterns in three unmanaged stands consisting of Picea abies (L.) Karst. and Betula pubescens Ehrh. and Betula pendula Roth (hereafter Betula spp.) in northern boreal Fennoscandia. We conducted a comprehensive analysis of small-scale spatial point patterns in three fully mapped 1.2-ha sample plots, representing different forest developmental stages: mid-successional, late-successional and old-growth forest. We used several variants of Ripley’s K-function to analyze the spatial point patterns along the successional gradient. Univariate analyses showed that mature trees of both species were either randomly distributed or clumped. P. abies saplings were clumped, and Betula spp. saplings occurred in a random or clumped manner. In the bivariate analyses, saplings were more likely to be found in the surroundings of mature trees of the same species, but occurred independent of the individuals of other tree species. Mature trees showed interspecific repulsion. Only modest differences occurred in the univariate patterns between the three successional stages, but in the bivariate analyses the most evident patterns, i.e. intraspecific attraction and interspecific repulsion, were stronger in the older successional stages. Overall, the studied stands appear structured as species-specific mosaics. These mosaics, along with mixed species composition, seem to be maintained by species self-replacement, which contrasts with findings from earlier studies.
  • Kreutz, Department of Forest Sciences, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 27, FI-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: andreas.kreutz@wald-rpl.de
  • Aakala, Department of Forest Sciences, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 27, FI-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID: http://orcid.org/0000-0003-0160-6410 E-mail: tuomas.aakala@helsinki.fi (email)
  • Grenfell, Department of Forest Sciences, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 27, FI-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: russell.grenfell@gmail.com
  • Kuuluvainen, Department of Forest Sciences, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 27, FI-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: timo.kuuluvainen@helsinki.fi
article id 507, category Research article
Tysk Staffan Ericsson, Lars Östlund, Rikard Andersson. (2003). Destroying a path to the past – the loss of culturally scarred trees and change in forest structure along Allmunvägen, in mid-west boreal Sweden. Silva Fennica vol. 37 no. 2 article id 507. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.507
The tradition to blaze trees to mark trails and boundaries is very old in northern Scandinavia. The disappearance of culturally modified trees (i.e. trees with trail blazes) and changes in forest structure along a section of an old bridle trail in boreal Sweden was analyzed using historical maps and forest surveys from the period 1876 to the year 2000. Remaining blazed trees were located during a field study and selected scars were dated. In total 104 scarred living and dead trees were found. The scars originated from the early 1500s to the early 1900s. Analysis of the forest surveys showed that the forest along the trail was dominated by older trees, and that the majority of the scarred trees probably were present, throughout the 19th century. By the mid 20th century logging had begun to affect the tree age along the trail and in 1974 no stands older than 180 years were present. A conservative estimate shows that around 90% of the original blazed trees have vanished. The trail was interpreted as have being lined for centuries with scarred trees which gradually have been destroyed during the 20th century. Culturally modified trees constitute an unique source of information for understanding pattern of old trails as well as of past human land use and movement in the landscape prior to the 20th century. This biological archive have to a large extent been destroyed by forestry activities and it is therefore very important to survey, recount and protect the trees that are still present.
  • Ericsson, SLU, Dept. of Forest Vegetation Ecology, S-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail: staffan@delta.se (email)
  • Östlund, SLU, Dept. of Forest Vegetation Ecology, S-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Andersson, SLU, Dept. of Forest Vegetation Ecology, S-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 559, category Research article
Juho Pennanen. (2002). Forest age distribution under mixed-severity fire regimes – a simulation-based analysis for middle boreal Fennoscandia. Silva Fennica vol. 36 no. 1 article id 559. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.559
A simulation model was used to study the age structure of unmanaged forest landscapes under different fire regimes. Stand age was defined as the age of the oldest tree cohort in a stand. When most fires are not stand-replacing, the theoretical equilibrium stand age distribution is either bell-shaped or bimodal and dominated by old age-classes. Old-growth forests (oldest cohort > 150 y) dominate the landscape unless fires are both frequent and severe. Simulation results and analytical calculations show that if a regime of frequent fires (about every 50 y) maintains landscapes dominated by old-growth forests, then old-growth dominance persists when the number of fires is decreased, despite the associated increase in fire severity. Simulation results were applied to Pinus sylvestris-dominated landscapes of middle boreal Fennoscandia, which according to empirical results were dominated by old-growth forests when fires were frequent during the 19th century. Since the changes in the fire regime can be plausibly explained by changes in the number of human-caused ignitions, old-growth forests have evidently also dominated the landscapes earlier when fires were less frequent. The simulation model is used to produce plausible age distributions of middle boreal Fennoscandian forest landscapes under different historical fire regimes. In summary, the frequency of large-scale disturbance alone predicts forest landscape dynamics poorly, and the roles played by fire severity and residual stands need to be considered carefully. Maintaining and restoring old-growth structures is essential to regaining the natural variability of Fennoscandian forest landscapes.
  • Pennanen, Department of Forest Ecology, P.O. Box 27, FIN-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: juho.pennanen@helsinki.fi (email)
article id 556, category Research article
Timo Kuuluvainen, Juha Mäki, Leena Karjalainen, Hannu Lehtonen. (2002). Tree age distributions in old-growth forest sites in Vienansalo wilderness, eastern Fennoscandia. Silva Fennica vol. 36 no. 1 article id 556. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.556
The age and size of trees was sampled and measured on eight sample plots (0.2 ha each) within a Pinus sylvestris -dominated boreal forest landscape in Vienansalo wilderness, Russian Karelia. The fire history of these plots was obtained from a previous dendrochronological study. All the studied sample plots showed a wide and uneven distribution of tree ages, but the shape of the age distributions of trees as well as tree species composition varied substantially. Trees over 250 years of age occurred in every studied plot, despite its small size. This suggests that old Pinus were common and rather evenly distributed in the landscape matrix. The oldest Pinus tree was 525 years of age. The correlations between tree age and size were often weak or even nil. In Pinus the correlation between age and diameter was stronger than that between age and height. In the dominant tree species Pinus and Picea, the largest trees were not the oldest trees. The tree age distributions together with the fire history data indicated that the past fires have not been stand replacing, as many of the older Pinus had survived even several fires. Tree age classes that had regenerated after the last fire were most abundant and dominated by Picea and/or deciduous trees, while the trees established before the last fire were almost exclusively Pinus. The results suggest that periodic occurrence of fire is important for the maintenance of the Pinus-dominated landscape. This is because fire kills most Picea and deciduous trees and at the same time enhances conditions for Pinus regeneration, facilitated by available seed from the continuous presence of old fire-tolerant Pinus trees.
  • Kuuluvainen, Department of Forest Ecology, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 24, FIN-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: timo.kuuluvainen@helsinki.fi (email)
  • Mäki, Department of Forest Ecology, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 24, FIN-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Karjalainen, Department of Forest Ecology, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 24, FIN-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Lehtonen, Faculty of Forestry, University of Joensuu, P.O. Box 24, FIN-80101 Joensuu, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:

Category: Review article

article id 73, category Review article
Timo Kuuluvainen, Tuomas Aakala. (2011). Natural forest dynamics in boreal Fennoscandia: a review and classification. Silva Fennica vol. 45 no. 5 article id 73. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.73
The aim here was to review and summarize the findings of scientific studies concerning the types of forest dynamics which occur in natural forests (i.e. forests with negligible human impact) of boreal Fennoscandia. We conducted a systematic search for relevant studies from selected reference databases, using search terms describing the location, structure and processes, and degree of naturalness of the forest. The studies resulting from these searches were supplemented with other known works that were not indexed in the databases. This procedure yielded a total of 43 studies. The studies were grouped into four types of forest dynamics according to the information presented on the characteristics of the native disturbance-succession cycle: 1) even-aged stand dynamics driven by stand-replacing disturbances, 2) cohort dynamics driven by partial disturbances, 3) patch dynamics driven by tree mortality at intermediate scales (> 200 m2) and 4) gap dynamics driven by tree mortality at fine scales (< 200 m2). All four dynamic types were reported from both spruce and pine dominated forests, but their commonness differed. Gap dynamics was most commonly reported in spruce forests, and cohort dynamics in pine forests. The studies reviewed provide the best obtainable overall picture of scientific findings concerning the characteristics and variability of the unmanaged boreal forest dynamics in Fennoscandia. The results demonstrate that the unmanaged Fennoscandian forests are characterized by more diverse and complex dynamics than has traditionally been acknowledged.
  • Kuuluvainen, University of Helsinki, Department of Forest Sciences, P.O. Box 27, FI-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: timo.kuuluvainen@helsinki.fi (email)
  • Aakala, University of Helsinki, Department of Forest Sciences, P.O. Box 27, FI-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:

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