Biomass modelling of selected drought tolerant Eucalypt species in South Africa

Phiri, Darius (2013-12)

Thesis (MScFor)--Stellenbosch University, 2013.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The study aims at developing models for predicting aboveground biomass for selected drought tolerant Eucalyptus (E) species (E. cladocalyx, E. gomphocephala and E. grandis x camaldulensis) from the dry west coast. Biomass models were fit for each of the species and a cross-species model was parameterised based on pooled data for all the three species. Data was based on destructive sampling of 28 eucalypt trees which were 20 years of age and additional five five-year old E. gomphocephala trees. Preliminary measurements on diameter at breast height (dbh), height (h) and crown height were recorded in the field. The sampled trees were then felled and samples of discs, branches and foliage were collected. Density of the wood discs and the bark was determined by a water displacement method and computer tomography scanning (CT-scanner). Stem biomass was reconstructed using Smalian’s formula for volume determination and the calculated densities. Upscaling of the crown was carried out by regression equations formulated by employing the sampled branches. Further assessment was carried out on a sub-sample by subjecting the samples to different drying temperatures in a series between 60 and 105ºC. Linear models were parameterised by a simultaneous regression approach based on Seemingly Unrelated Regression (SUR) using the “Systemfit” R statistical package. The predictor variables employed in the study were dbh, d2h and h in which the coefficient of determination (R2), Mean Standard Error (MSE) and Root Mean Standard Error (RMSE) were used to determine the goodness of fit for the models. Akaike Information Criteria (AIC) was also used in the selection of the best fitting model. A system of equations consisting of five models was formulated for each Eucalyptus species. The biomass prediction models had degrees of determination (R2) ranging from 0.65 to 0.98 in which dbh and d2h were the main predictor variable while h improved the model fit. The total biomass models were the best fitting models in most cases while foliage biomass had the least good fit when compared to other models. When the samples were subjected to different drying temperatures, stem wood had the largest percentage change of 6% when drying from 60ºC to 105ºC while foliage had the lowest percentage change of less than 2%.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die doel met hierdie studie is om modelle vir die voorspelling van die bogrondse biomassa van drie droogte-bestande Eucalyptus (E) spesies (E. cladocalyx, E. gomphocephala en E. grandis x camaldulensis), gekweek op die droë kusvlakte in Wes-Kaapland, te ontwikkel. Biomassa modelle vir elk van die spesies is gepas en ’n model gegrond op die gekombineerde data van al drie die spesies, is geparameteriseer. Verder is die biomassa variasie onder verskeie droogingstemperature vasgestel. Die data versameling is uitgevoer gegrond op die destruktiewe mostering van 28 Eucalyptus bome wat 20 jaar oud was en ’n bykomende vyf vyfjarige E. gomphocephala bome. Die aanvanklike mates, naamlik deursnee op borshoogte (dbh), boomhoogte (h) en kroonhoogte is in die veld opgemeet. Die gemonsterde bome is afgesaag en monsters van stamhout skywe, takke en die bas is versamel. Die digtheid van die skywe en die bas is deur die waterverplasing metode, en Rekenaar Tomografie skandering (“CT-scanning”) vasgestel. Stam biomassa is rekonstrukteer deur gebruik te maak van Smalian se formule vir die vasstelling van volume en berekende digtheid. Die opskaal van die kroon biomassa is gedoen met behulp van regressie vergelykings van gekose takmonsters. Submonsters is onderwerp aan ’n reeks van verskillende drogingstemperature tussen 60 en 105ºC. Lineêre modelle is deur ’n gelyktydige regressie benadering gegrond op die Seemingly Unrelated Regression (SUR) wat ’n“Systemfit” R statistiese pakket gebruik, parameteriseer. Die voorspeller veranderlikes wat in hierdie studie gebruik is, is dbh, d2h en h waarin die koëffisient van bepaling (R2), gemiddelde standaardfout (MSE) en vierkantswortel van die gemiddelde standaardfout (RMSE) gebruik is om vas te stel hoe goed die model pas. Akaike Inligting Kriteria is gebruik vir die seleksie van die gepaste model. ’n Reeks vergelykings wat bestaan uit vyf modelle is vir elke Eucalyptus spesie geformuleer. Die biomassa voorspelling model het waardes vir die koëffisiente van bepaling (R2) opgelewer wat strek van 0.65 to 0.98% en waarin dbh en d2h die hoof voorspelling veranderlikes is, terwyl h die pas van die model verbeter. Die totale biomassa model het in die meeste gevalle die beste gepas en die blaarbiomassa die swakste as dit met die ander modelle vergelyk word. Tydens droging vind die grootste persentasie verandering van 6% by stamhout plaas tussen temperature van 60ºC tot 105ºC, en die kleinste persentasie verandering van minder as 2% by blare.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/85739
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