Placing a historical plantation in an ecological context
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Land use legacy effects on forest structure in 33 coastal Georgia maritime forest plots were examined using discrete return airborne lidar data at Wormsloe State Historic Site. Historical maps, color, black and white, and color infrared aerial photography, and historical manuscripts were used to determine land use/land cover (LULC) in the plots over a 200-year time span. Plots were classified into low, moderate, and high levels of disturbance and transition based on LULC changes. Lidar metrics used to describe canopy structural characteristics within individual plots were ordinated using Detrended Correspondence Analysis. Disturbance and transition levels were overlaid onto the plots in ordination space and inspected for patterns. Transition levels produced statistically different patterns on canopy structure among the plots. Lidar-derived visualizations were incorporated into the Wormsloe Institute for Environmental History website, which was redesigned as part of this project.