Refinement of a drone-based method for estimating coarse woody debris and biomass residue following forest harvest
Davis, Brian Jeffrey
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A quick and reliable method to estimate coarse woody debris (CWD) following forest harvest is required. Current methods of estimation are both time consuming and costly. A previous study tried to develop a method to calculate CWD volume using drones but overestimated volumes significantly. This study sought to reduce the errors of the previous study. Plots and piles were measured at two recently harvested sites in Emanuel and Effingham counties in Georgia, USA. Errors in estimates of volume ranged from very good (<10%) to very poor (>70%). Analysis showed no significant difference in ground and GIS measurements for distributed slash for the Emanuel County plots (p = 0.7362, df = 8) and for the Effingham County plots (p = 0.6467, df = 9). Ground-based measurements were significantly different from GIS measurements at both Rimes and Jack’s Creek for both oriented and slash piles (p = 0.0039, df = 15).