Short term responses of soil microarthropod community to clear felling and alternative forest regeneration methods
Clear felling is being criticized to be contributing to a reduction in biodiversity and negatively impacting ecosystem functioning. This study uses soil microarthropods as good indicators of ecological effects of forest harvesting after clear felling. It is conducted in four sites in central Finland, on spruce stands when the soil is frozen to minimize damage on the forest floor.
RESEARCH GOALS AND METHODS
To assess the influence of harrowing, clear felling, and new alternative regeneration methods i.e., selection felling and gap felling on soil microarthropods after three years of harvesting, orders Coleoptera and higher taxa are examined. Parameters considered are abundances of functional groups and community structure using 1 ha plots. The experiment has five treatments (regeneration methods) and untreated controls.
CONCLUSIONS AND TAKEAWAYS
The authors state that, harvesting effects were more recognized at species level than at higher taxonomic levels. Soil microarthropods are sensitive to changes in soil moisture conditions and harvesting intensities, as their feeding patterns are disrupted. Felling and harrowing influence microarthropods population, however microarthropods are resistant to short term changes brought by forest regeneration practices.
Short-term responses of soil macroarthropod community to clear felling and alternative forest regeneration methods. Forest Ecology and Management. 2003;172(2-3):339 - 353. doi:10.1016/S0378-1127(01)00811-8..
- Finnish Forest Research Institute, Vantaa Research Center, Vantaa Finland