Regeneration surveys

During the last week in August, I had the opportunity to try something new. I had the chance to survey a cutblock from 2011 to see how the establishment of species were coming. Although this task is not preformed a lot in my job. Sometimes it is necessary to survey old cutblocks to make sure the block is reproducing acceptable amounts of merchantable species such as Trembling Aspen, Balsam Polar and Paper Birch.

I found it neat as to how fast Aspens sprout up from existing roots underground. The reason why the grow back quick is a tactic some trees use called suckering. When the older trees are cut, it signals the roots to commence growth of new trees and you will see aspen saplings come through the earth.

For the past week, I was the only summer student left working at our office. So it was exciting to be able to try something new on my own to help broaden my realm of skills in the forestry industry. Although an establishment survey is fairly easy, it helped to know my deciduous species as it was difficult to distinguish between green alder and paper birch.

The objective of an establishment plot is to accumulate a total of the trees within a 1.78m plot. You then mark the centre of the plot and measure the tallest growing tree in the plot of each species. One thing in the forestry industry, is trying not to be bias about where your plot are placed in a block. What I decided to do was to distribute the the plots evenly throughout the block. So I divided the block into section and randomly chose a point in each section before going into the cutblock to take measurements. This method showed an unbiased approach and a just full approach as most blocks vary in soil structure, shrub growth and may have water impacting in areas.

Overall this experience was a great way to finish my last day of work by doing something that out of the ordinary. By doing this, I’ve been able to see blocks before harvest during processing, reclaim, and post block cuts. It’s nice to be able to witness step by step as to what exactly happens in the process of harvesting.

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