Help > Forest Population Structure

Community and Population Structure—USDA Forest Inventory (ESA EcoEd Digital Library)

This module provides access to tree diameter data from the USDA Forest Service Forest Inventory and Analysis National Program for one county from each U.S. state (excluding Hawaii, which was not available at the time of creation), and Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Counties were generally selected based on having high forest area. Data was derived from data online in the FIA DataMart, mid-2012.

It must be emphasized that we currently use only one county per state/territory, to represent that state/territory. This module was designed to simply spur student interest; more comprehensive studies should of course utilize all data for a state/territory. We may transition to using all data if this module generates enough interest.

The Tree Inventory Data component outputs data for one of the nine USDA Forest Service regions. States are grouped entirely in one region or another, based on whether the relevant county (we only deal with one county per state in this module) is mostly or entirely in a given region (USDA forest regions mostly, but don't always, follow state lines).

Data may be filtered by state and year. States have data available for different years, and so it can be very important to consider the per-state years listed in the Tree Inventory State Filter.

The Rank Abundance Calculator calculates a table with count, rank order, and relative abundance for each species from the data it's provided. Rank order and relative abundance can serve as x and y values for Line Chart components to create rank abundance curves.

The Species Richness Calculator and Species Diversity Calculator calculate species richness and Shannon diversity indices by county. Sets of these can be input into Bar Chart Series Union and then into the Bar Chart component to produce comparison plots.

The Tree Inventory Stats Calculator outputs a summary table of tree diameter statistics -- mean, standard deviation, count, minimum, and maximum for a given input dataset, rounded to 3 places, and grouped by either genus, species, state, or year. This table may be viewed with the Data Viewer. The tree diameter port outputs mean, standard deviation, and count, and may be fed into the Statistical Bar Chart component.

The Tree Inventory Data Grouper groups ("bins") data by diameter, into the specified bin sizes. Grouped data may then be fed into Histogram and Dual Bar Chart components. Note that the Dual Bar Chart requires datasets grouped by the same bin size.

Example Pipes

Forest Population Structure Rank Abundance Curves

Forest Population Structure Diversity Indices by Year

Forest Population Structure Diameter Statistics

Example Output

Forest Population Structure Rank Abundance Table


This project was developed with funding provided by the National Science Foundation Award, Digital Resource Discovery and Dynamic Learning Communities for a Changing Biology (DRD) (# DUE-1044359). We would like to acknowledge the work of Principal Investigators, Advisory Panel members, and Staff who made these packages possible.

This Forest Population Structure package was developed by a sub-committee composed of the following members of the advisory panel: Dr. Denny S. Fernández (team lead), Dr. Colleen McLinn, Dr. Tom Langen, and Dr. Paul Weihe. For additional information, please click here.





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