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Title: Long-term assessment of soil physicochemical properties and seedlings establishment after skidding operations in mountainous mixed hardwoods
Authors: Tavankar, Farzam
Nikooy, Mehrdad
Ezzati, Sättar
Jourgholami, Meghdad
Latterini, Francesco
Venanzi, Rachele 
Picchio, Rodolfo 
Issue Date: 2022
One of the basic requirements for sustainable forest management in mixed broadleaved stands is to provide suitable conditions for natural regeneration of trees. These conditions include, but are not limited to, the frequency, quality and the composition of seedling species. Compacted soil layers caused by forest machinery traffic are the most common problem affecting seedling establishment and growth after skidding operations. In this study, we evaluated the frequency, quality, diversity of seedling species and physicochemical properties of soil on 10-, 20- and 30-year-old abandoned skid trails. Further comparison to the values of the mentioned above parameters in control areas allowed for the evaluation in terms of natural recovery processes, under varying traffic intensity and the longitudinal slope of the skid trails in a mixed broadleaved forest. Results showed that there is a significant positive trend of recovery for soil physicochemical properties and ecological characteristics (density and quality) of seedling growing on the skid trails. The time required to recover soil properties and ecological attributes of seedlings increased with increasing traffic intensity and slope of the skid trail. Our results showed that it takes 20 and 30 years to fully recover the chemical and physical properties of the soil, respectively. On the 30-year-old skid trails, density and species diversity indices were fully recovered, but the quality of the seedlings was not restored to the control conditions. The results suggest the importance of a proper planning of the skid trail network, avoiding in particular skid trails with a slope gradient higher than 20%.
ISSN: 16124669
DOI: 10.1007/s10342-022-01461-9
Appears in Collections:A1. Articolo in rivista

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