Light extinction coefficients specific to the understory vegetation of the southern boreal forest, Quebec

Aubin, I.; Beaudet, M. et Messier, C. (2000). « Light extinction coefficients specific to the understory vegetation of the southern boreal forest, Quebec ». Canadian Journal of Forest Research, 30, pp. 168-177.

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This study was conducted in six different forest types in Abitibi, Que, (i) to identify the factors that most influence understory light transmission in the southern boreal forest and (ii) to develop light extinction coefficients (k), which could be used to simulate light transmission in the understory. Light availability and understory vegetation (cover, composition, vertical distribution, and leaf area index) were characterized within three strata (0.05-5 m) in a total of 180 quadrats. Calculated k values were based on measured light availability and leaf area index. These values varied among forest types, strata, understory vegetation types, and cover in the upper stratum The highest k values were generally associated with a dense stratum of Acer spicatum Lam. We developed five sets of k values based on the factors that most affected light transmission. Measured transmission (T(m)) was compared with transmission predicted (T(p)) from each set of k values Light transmission predicted using a single k value (mean k = 0 54) underestimated T(m). More accurate predictions were obtained when we used the other four sets of k values. Our results indicate that, in the southern boreal forest, the understory vegetation can be quite heterogeneous and patterns of light transmission cannot be accurately simulated using a unique k value. However, the various sets of k values developed in this study could be used in prediction models of forest dynamics to obtain relatively good predictions of understory light extinction in forest types similar to the ones studied here.

Type: Article de revue scientifique
Mots-clés ou Sujets: light extinction coefficients, understory vegetation, southern boreal forest, light transmission
Unité d'appartenance: Faculté des sciences > Département des sciences biologiques
Déposé par: Christian Messier
Date de dépôt: 08 janv. 2009
Dernière modification: 01 nov. 2014 02:08
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