While forest ecosystem classification work in Quebec has traditionally concentrated on inventory and mapping, more effort is now being placed on developing field guides similar to those produced in other Canadian provinces. As part of a project to produce a practical forest ecosystem field guide for the Amos Lowlands Ecological Region in northwestern Quebec, existing sub-regional ecological studies were exploited in order to develop a regional classification of forest ecosystems, or forest stations. Review of four fundamental studies provided a list of 107 ecological phases, each representing a particular combination of forest composition, surface deposit type and moisture regime. A series of silvicultural and environmental interpretations were developed and values for each were attributed to the ecological phases. Cluster analysis was then performed to classify phases into 29 broader units. A large, regional biophysical database which became available later in the project provided a means of validating and effectively modifying the classification. The justifications for using the original approach are discussed.
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- Development of a Practical Forest Ecosystem Classification from Existing Biophysical Studies: An Approach Used in Northwestern Quebec
Brian D. Harvey
- Springer Netherlands
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