MULTI-SCALE ANALYSIS OF JACK PINE SAPLINGS AFTER FIRE ACROSS BURN SEVERITIES
- Department of Geography, Environment, and Spatial Science, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, USA
Keywords: Multiscale analysis, UAS, forest recovery, machine learning
Abstract. Fire serves as a successional initiation in jack pine (Pinus banksiana) forests of North America, as jack pine reproduce using seratonous cones that open only in intense heat. Jack pine seedling resilience after fire is characterized by high numbers of mortality. The estimation of sapling survivability and density is useful for understanding dynamics of carbon sequestration, forest structure and dynamic, and supporting management of the landscape. Most studies concerning the interaction of forest disturbances occurs at moderate spatial resolution. These moderate resolution data analyses do not adequately capture the fine scale spatial variation of the landscape after fire for understanding sapling survival. Thus, high-resolution data, such as aerial photography may provide more detailed information to support decision-making. A key to the types of spatial patterns that emerge in these early years is the pre-fire stand condition. In heavily managed areas, the mosaic of forest patches may include extensive variety in disturbance conditions. In this current research we address the problem of scale in relation to understanding the influence of pre-fire condition on post-fire early recovery patterns. To do this, we combine data output from the LandTrendr algorithm in Google Earth Engine with spectral data from aerial photography collected by airplane and Unmanned Aerial System to perform a random forest classification. The result is a finer scale resolution map of forest conditions of varying sapling density.