Predictive equations for biomass and fuel characteristics of Argentine shrubs
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CitationHierro, J. L., Branch, L. C., Villarreal, D., & Clark, K. L. (2000). Predictive equations for biomass and fuel characteristics of Argentine shrubs. Journal of Range Management, 53(6), 617-621.
PublisherSociety for Range Management
JournalJournal of Range Management
AbstractPredictive equations for estimating shrub biomass in semi-arid scrub ecosystems are essential for evaluating shrub encroachment, conducting ecosystem-level studies of net primary productivity (NPP) and nutrient cycling, and examining effects of different fire regimes. In this study, we developed predictive equations to estimate total aboveground biomass and biomass of foliage and stems of the 8most common shrubs in the semi-arid scrub (Monte) of central Argentina. We also examined the relationship between shrub size and proportions of these components for the dominant species, Larrea divaricata Cavanilles (creosotebush), and determined fuel characteristics (dead-to-live ratio, bulk density) of the 8 shrub species. Regression analyses were used to examine the relationships between aboveground biomass and 5 field measurements (diameter of the longest stem, shrub height, maximum crown width, crown width at right angles to maximum crown width, and crown volume). A natural log-log model based on a single variable best described this relationship in most cases. The easiest field measurement for 6 of the 8 species was diameter of the longest stem, and this measure was often the best predictor of shrub biomass. As L. divaricata increased in size, the proportional biomass of large stems increased, and bio-mass of foliage and small stems decreased. This pattern suggests productivity may decrease with shrub age. The mass of dead materialwas low in most shrub species. Bulk densities were comparable to those of shrubs in other semi-arid ecosystems. Equations developed here will allow rapid and accurate estimation of shrub biomass in the Monte of Argentina.