Biomass and Carbon Measurements for a Central Hardwood Forest


Martin A. Spetich and Stephen R. Shifley

Research Forest Ecologist (MAS), USDA Forest Service, Southern Research Station, P.O. Box 1270, Hot Springs, AR 71902; Research Forester (Biometrics), 202 Natural Resources Bldg., University of Missouri-Columbia, Columbia Missouri, 65211-7260

Abstract – Accurate measurements of forest biomass are increasingly important as the impacts of climate change increase and escalate the associated importance of carbon storage in forests. We present detailed tables for determining the size of plots to optimize field measurement of above-ground woody biomass and carbon. Our results are based on analysis of data collected in five 100% inventories of an old-growth Central Hardwood forest though sixty-six years of remeasurement and under various disturbance regimes. The size of plots recommended for estimating biomass and carbon change with the type of disturbance. The tables can be used to help managers identify the most appropriate plot sizes for determination of above-ground biomass and carbon.