A Chronosequence of Wood Decomposition in the Boreal Forests of Russia

(MS Thesis by Mikhail Yatskov; November 2001)

Birch This web page is a part of MS thesis «A Chronosequence of Wood Decomposition in the Boreal Forests of Russia» by Mikhail Yatskov, a graduate student at the Oregon State University. The work was funded by the National Science Foundation (DEB-9632929).

Until recently there was virtually no experience with studies of woody detritus in Russian forests. Our project was aimed at improving understanding of the size and dynamics of woody detritus pool throughout Russia. We measured the stores and decomposition rates of woody detritus, and this provided a basis for assessment of the carbon pool and flux associated with woody detritus in a major forest region of the globe -- the Russian taiga forest.

The project is a part of larger scientific effort assessing carbon accumulation, storage, and release by woody detritus in the forests of Russia. The study area includes six locations in different parts of Russian boreal forest (Map of Russia). Data collection occurred during 1993 and the period from 1996 to 1999. Data collection for decay-specific density calculations took place in all six regions, while sampling for the decomposition rate calculations took place in the St.-Petersburg, Krasnoyarsk, Irkutsk, and Khabarovsk regions.

The major outputs of this project include the volume to carbon conversion factors that have been used to convert dead wood volume data into carbon stores for Russian boreal forests. Also, wood detritus decomposition rates of major tree species in four geographic regions of Russia were determined. These rates have exposed the time lag of carbon release from coarse woody debris in Russian boreal forests.

Questions? Email Dr. Mark Harmon at mark.harmon@orst.edu or Dr. Olga Krankina at olga.krankina@orst.edu

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