Forests and their Dynamics

Canopy cover in a dipterocarp rain forest
Logo of the FORMIND / FORMIX3 forest simulation models. The models describes forest growth on the basis of carbon flows (process-based approach).

Forests cover roughly 30% of the earth’s land surface, but land-use and climatic change are modifying and threatening these ecosystems. To protect forests a better understanding of forest dynamics is crucial. Therefore, we have developed a family of process-based forest models: FORMIND and FORMIX. The models are used to simulate the spatio-temporal dynamics of mixed-species forests (uneven-aged) in combination with disturbances (e.g. logging, drought, stroms). The models calculate tree growth, tree mortality, the carbon balance of individual trees, competition for light and space, and recruitment processes by explicit seed dispersal. Our forest models have been applied in Malaysia, French Guyana, Ecuador, Paraguay, Brasilia, Mexico, Chile and Germany. We also use complex spatial statistics to get new insights into forest structures and dynamics.

Selected Publications

  • Rueger, N., Williams-Linera, G., Kissling, W.D., Huth, A. (2008) Long-term impacts of fuelwood extraction on a Mexican cloud forest. Ecosystems 11: 868-881
  • Wiegand, T., Gunatilleke, S., Gunatilleke, N. (2007):
    Species associations in a heterogeneous Sri Lankan dipterocarp forest
    Am.Nat. 170 (4), E77-E95
  • Huth, A., Drechsler, M., Köhler, P. (2005):
    Using multicriteria decision analysis and a forest growth model to assess impacts of tree harvesting in Dipterocarp lowland rain forests
    Forest Ecol.Manag. 207 (1-2), 215-232
  • Köhler, P., Huth, A. (2004):
    Simulating growth dynamics in a South-East Asian rainforest threatened by recruitment shortage and tree harvesting
    Clim.Change 67 (1), 95-117
  • Huth, A.; Ditzer, T. (2000) Simulation of the growth of a Dipterocarp lowland rain forest with FORMIX3. Ecological Modelling 134: 1-25.
  • More publications




Joint SESYNC-UFZ-sDiv Call for Synthesis Proposals on “Biodiversity & Ecosystem Services”

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