Spatial Patterns of Trees, Forests, and Landscapes

Moving fire regimes and forest structure towards desired conditions is a central objective for federal land management.  While it is well accepted that forest ecosystem functions and processes are sensitive to tree patterns, particularly in ponderosa pine and dry mixed-conifer, the scientific basis for spatial patterns within restoration prescriptions is limited to a handful of studies over a small geographic area.  Key to developing these prescriptions is fine-scaled spatial attributes such as stand-level, between-group, and within-group spatial reference conditions.

This research is an ongoing effort to provide

  1. An introduction to spatial statistics and their application managers, practitioners, students and colleagues emphasizing techniques commonly used to quantify local tree patterns. Namely continuum percolation, second-order neighborhood analysis, and nearest neighbor clutter removal
  2. Spatial and structural reference conditions for ponderosa pine and dry-mixed conifer forest spanning Arizona and New Mexico
  3. Interpretations of research findings in the context of restoration, forest management and desired future conditions