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Goal: Apply Knowledge Globally Forest Inventory and Analysis plots provide foundational data for the Experimental Forest Network

A pole stuck in the ground marks the center of an FIA plot on the Bent Creek Experimental Forest
Plot center of FIA plot on the Bent Creek Experimental Forest. FIA plots are non-destructive and measure growth, mortality, and removal of trees and other forest vegetation. (Forest Service photo by Bryan Mudder)

Introduction

New Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) plots are being installed across the Southern Research Station Experimental Forest Network. The purpose of these plots is to:

This work will increase communication across experimental forests and offer foundational data that will be used to maintain and improve the health of our forests and other natural resources.

Summary

The SRS FIA Program collects, analyzes, and reports on the status, trends, and condition of America’s forests: how much forest exists, where it exists, and how it is changing.

A pilot study in 2009 installed 50 FIA plots on the Coweeta, Calhoun, and Santee Experimental Forests and laid the foundation for how to develop a series of experiments across the SRS Experimental Forest Network. These experiments will provide the infrastructure necessary to conduct broad-scale studies across the South, expand collaborative research opportunities, and increase connectivity between experimental forests.

In 2020, the Network team and FIA installed the first plots on the Bent Creek and Palustris Experimental Forests. FIA plots and collection methods are a low-cost, reliable way of generating a consistent set of measurements across the Network that will help local and regional planners develop strategies to sustain forest lands in the southeastern U.S.


Experimental Forests of the Southern Research Station Story Map: this story map shows locations, research highlights, future research opportunities, and other information about each of the Southern Research Station’s 19 experimental forests.

Principal Investigators
Stephanie Laseter, Biological Scientist, SRS-R8 Liaison
Johnny Boggs, Biological Scientist
RWUs
4855 - Center for Integrated Forest Science
4801 - Forest Inventory and Analysis
Strategic Program Areas
Inventory and Monitoring
Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
Wildland Fire and Fuels
Wildlife and Fish
CompassLive Article
Experimental Forest Network in Action Mode
Research Partner
FIA
External Partner
Southeastern states (FIA certified crews)