The Mountain Pine Beetle epidemic in Alberta has been substantial, with several forest products companies facing a potential decrease in fibre supply as a result. Accurate forest inventory is integral in developing management strategies that effectively address the infestation. Within this context, forest inventory must provide enough species composition detail to allow the design of appropriate harvesting activities. The project evaluated the use of softcopy photo-interpretation and a semi-automated inventory approach to create a forest inventory with a higher level of detail, and looked to advance these methodologies to explore whether metrics such as tree height and volume could also be included. The project also aimed to demonstrate the benefits that such an inventory could provide in growth and yield analysis and within the general framework of integrated land management. Results indicate that the more detailed inventory is useful in addressing forest management challenges associated with the Mountain Pine Beetle infestation and in improving growth and yield analysis, resulting in an overall enhancement to strategic and operational planning. The inventory can also be used for integrated land management, allowing for species composition to be spatially identified within the stand and the identification of other features including anthropogenic disturbance and microsites.
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