Silviculture in conifer forest of Bhutan.

Silviculture ?
Science and art of cultivating forest crops (caring, tending, harvesting) based on the study of the life history and general characteristics of forest trees in combination with specific site and social factors.

Conifer forest:
 Fir Forest  Hemlock dominated forest  Spruce forest dominated forest  Blue pine dominated forest

For the purpose of management, each forest type and each forest site has to be looked at individually

Fir Forest; Management Fir is a shade tolerant species, major competitors are
R. hodgsonii, Y. microphylla, A.racemosa and Betula  On sites with R. hodgsonii, select groups with presence of a sapling bank.  On sites with Yushania or Arundinaria - reduction of bamboo canopy through controlled grazing will help regeneration. Make sure seeds are available soon after felling.

 Restrict the size of openings below

0.1 ha to avoid dominance of bamboos and other competitors.

 Create oval-shaped openings perpendicular to the

slope for partial shading by the surrounding trees. Direct sunlight dries up the seedbed (e.g. moss pads)

 Proper felling direction, avoid damage to sapling and poles as these will form future stand.

 Retain coarse woody debris for protection

from the animals. The debris also serves as important seed bed once rotten.

 Over sized trees should be retained to serve as mother trees, wildlife habitat (e.g. Red Panda and source of woody debris.

 Follow management prescription strictly.

Hemlock Forest; Management: Highly shade tolerant, regenerates best in small groups (indirect sunlight). Opening size needs to be adjusted according to site conditions.  On moist sites, without severe competition, max. group opening of 0.35 ha. On drier sites with bamboo and herbaceous competition, create group size of 0.1 to 0.25 ha.

 Avoid damage to the existing groups of regeneration during felling, directional felling is a must in this case.  Hemlock strongly depends on moisture in the substrate, retain woody coarse debris (2 – 3m3) and few over sized trees per opening to maximize partial shading

Spruce Forest; Management:
Spruce is a intermediate shade intolerant species. Creating large opening would be an option. Need to see the competitors. Bamboos, Sambucus and Aconogonom are serious competitors  Sites without competitors, maximum opening size of 0.35 ha. can be created.  Incase of understory competitors, restrict the opening size below 0.25 ha.  While felling avoid damage to the remaining stand. Incase of damage, remove it immediately to avoid bark beetle.  Do not create opening more than the prescribed size Bigger opening attracts animals.  Follow sanitation prescription strictly

Blue pine Forest; Management:
Forms large stands of pure forests. Highly shade intolerant.  For mature stand (80 -90 years), create opening up to 0.35 ha. But make sure enough seed trees are left in the surrounding (40% of surround trees blue pine).  Single tree selection is an option for local use.  In young stand, carry out thinning starting from crown closure.  Moderate thinning (removal of 25% vol.) should be carried out at least once in 10 years.  Thinning should not only concentrate on malformed and damage trees. Elite trees should be favored by removing immediate competitors.  Aim at creating well structured stand, avoid creating large gaps in the canopy in young stands to avoid snow damage.

In General Follow management plan seriously.  Maintain prescribed distance between openings and cable lines.  Avoid cable line radiating from one landing, danger of interlocking and large opening.  Create parallel lines  Do not harvest in the intercorridor areas until the next scheduled operation.

Tashi Delek

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