|Area:||Inventory and Planning|
|Sponsor:||Alberta-Pacific Forest Industries Inc.|
Object & Deliverables
The primary aim of this project was to assist in the interpretation of conifer understory presence, species composition, crown closure and height, as well as its distribution (homogeneous or not) under deciduous stands. The Alberta Vegetation Inventory (AVI) was enhanced by collecting information and incorporating it into the forest inventory of Forest Management Unit (FMU) L3 and several operational townships.
The methodology used for the project was adopted from the “Alberta-Pacific FMA Re-inventory Procedures and Standards Manual” with regards to stratification and classification of vegetation. Exceptions were made for aerial photography, photo preparation and stratification, classification, attribute coding, and digital representation; which were adjusted accordingly based on the nature of the project.
The evaluation of procedural options for interpretation of images, incorporation of information into the AVI re-inventory data and the results of the field truthing program resulted in an altered procedure being adopted. Recommendations outlined for the conifer understory program going forward included:
– acquiring Color Infrared (C.I.R.) aerial photography prior to May 1 to avoid I.R. reflectance;
– flying the C.I.R. photography along flight lines similar to the black and white I.R.;
– addressing factors impacting the quality of exposures within and between townships to mitigate variations in interpretation utility;
– refinement of areas to be flown;
– use of up-to-date C.I.R. photography;
It was found that the C.I.R. photography was a primary factor in interpreting stand attributes supplementary to conifer understory such as larch presence, distinction of birch and shrub from deciduous cover, differentiation between different species, and interpretation of stand attributes.