Vladimir Shanin, Pavel Grabarnik, Maxim Shashkov, Natalya Ivanova, Sergey Bykhovets, Pavel Frolov, Miroslav Stamenov


Most models of forest communities cannot represent the asymmetry of crowns resulting from inter-tree competition. However, this is important for the accurate simulation of mixed and uneven-aged forest stands. In the paper we propose a new model, which is individual-based and spatially-explicit, i.e., taking into account the relative positions and properties of all competing trees in a forest stand. The model uses species-specific coefficients, thus it allows to take into account the different strategies of competition for light. The model operates with the 3D-representation of tree crowns and light transmission through the canopy, with discrete spatial and temporal resolution. It thus enables to represent the asymmetry of the crown shape and biomass distribution in response to the local surrounding of a given tree. In order to estimate the performance of the model in the simulation of aboveground competition, a set of simulation scenarios, representing stands of different spatial structures, ages, and species compositions, was used. Simulations showed the positive effect of species mixture on crown size and light interception efficiency, as well as species- and age-related dependencies of these parameters. Differences in the spatial structure mostly affected the light transmission pattern at the stand level. The importance of crown asymmetry in the increase in light interception efficiency was also shown. Thus, the proposed model allows simulating light absorption by the canopy with a high spatial resolution, using relatively few parameters. The model imitates a mechanism allowing trees to decrease the aboveground competition in forest stands and it also is applicable for simulating aboveground competition in mixed uneven-aged stands.


competition, PAR, crown asymmetry, mixed uneven-aged stands

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