Long-term Monitoring

Permanent Plots

AFERP conducts several long-term inventories.  Overstory, sapling, seedling and herbaceous vegetation and light environment are sampled using nested permenant plots centered on 20 randomly selected gridpoints on a 50 m by 50 m grid (see figure below).  Overstory sampling includes all woody plants greater than or equal to 9.5 cm dbh on a 0.05 ha circular plot.  Sapling data is collected for all woody plants greater than or equal to 1.5 cm dbh and with dbh less than 9.5 cm on a 0.01 ha circular plot nested within the overstory plot.  Seedling (dbh < 1.5 cm) and Herbaceous vegetation are inventoried using an array of 1 m2 quadrats systematically located within each overstory plot.  These inventories are performed on a 5-year cycle.


Although originally sampled with the same 0.05 circular plots, snags and downed deadwood are now inventoried using line-intercept sampling.  Dead wood is sampled using 50-100 m long transects (roughly 2.5 – 3.0 km total/research area) centered on all gridpoints within each research area (see figure below).  The orientation of each transect is assigned at random.  Deadwood is measured on a 10-year cycle.

RA1 with plot locations (nested circles) and deadwood transects.