Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 400508
Title Modelling natural disturbances in forest ecosystems: a review
Author(s) Seidl, R.; Fernandes, P.M.; Fonseca, T.F.; Gillet, F.; Jöhnsson, A.M.; Merganičová, K.; Netherer, S.; Arpaci, A.; Bontemps, J.D.; Bugmann, H.; González-Olabarria, J.R.; Lasch, P.; Meredieu, C.; Moreira, F.; Schelhaas, M.; Mohren, G.M.J.
Source Ecological Modelling 222 (2011)4. - ISSN 0304-3800 - p. 903 - 924.
Department(s) CE - Forest Ecosystems
Forest Ecology and Forest Management
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2011
Keyword(s) mountain pine-beetle - ips-typographus l. - douglas-fir beetle - spruce budworm defoliation - dendroctonus-ponderosae hopkins - predicting postfire mortality - decision-support-system - western united-states - global climate-change - colorado front range
Abstract Natural disturbances play a key role in ecosystem dynamics and are important factors for sustainable forest ecosystem management. Quantitative models are frequently employed to tackle the complexities associated with disturbance processes. Here we review the wide variety of approaches to modelling natural disturbances in forest ecosystems, addressing the full spectrum of disturbance modelling from single events to integrated disturbance regimes. We applied a general, process-based framework founded in disturbance ecology to analyze modelling approaches for drought, wind, forest fires, insect pests and ungulate browsing. Modelling approaches were reviewed by disturbance agent and mechanism, and a set of general disturbance modelling concepts was deduced. We found that although the number of disturbance modelling approaches emerging over the last 15 years has increased strongly, statistical concepts for descriptive modelling are still largely prevalent over mechanistic concepts for explanatory and predictive applications. Yet, considering the increasing importance of disturbances for forest dynamics and ecosystem stewardship under anthropogenic climate change, the latter concepts are crucial tool for understanding and coping with change in forest ecosystems. Current challenges for disturbance modelling in forest ecosystems are thus (i) to overcome remaining limits in process understanding, (ii) to further a mechanistic foundation in disturbance modelling, (iii) to integrate multiple disturbance processes in dynamic ecosystem models for decision support in forest management, and (iv) to bring together scaling capabilities across several levels of organization with a representation of system complexity that captures the emergent behaviour of disturbance regimes
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