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Estimating number and size of forest patches from FIA plot data

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Forest inventory and analysis (FIA) annual plot data provide for estimates of forest area, type, volume, growth, and other attributes. Estimates of forest landscape metrics, such as those describing abundance, size, and shape of forest patches, however, typically are not derived from FIA plot data but from satellite image-based land cover maps. Associating image-based land cover metrics with FIA plot-based attributes is problematic due to differences in definitions between FIA land use and image-based land cover, temporal inconsistencies between plot and image acquisitions, and spatial misregistration between plots and map pixels. We assess an existing approach for using FIA field plot data directly for estimating the number and mean size of forest patches within estimation units typically reported by FIA (e.g., counties, States, or other geographic extents of moderate to large area). Comparison analyses reveal that FIA plot-based estimates of mean patch size are larger, and estimates of the number of patches are smaller than estimates derived from a satellite image-based land cover map.
Nelson, Mark D. , Lister, Andrew J. , Hansen, Mark H.
Includes references
United States Dept. of Agriculture, Forest Service, [2009] General technical report WO ; 79
Journal Articles, USDA Authors, Peer-Reviewed
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