, Volume 30, Issue 3, pp 935–947 | Cite as

Extended biomass allometric equations for large mangrove trees from terrestrial LiDAR data

  • Adewole Olagoke
  • Christophe Proisy
  • Jean-Baptiste Féret
  • Elodie Blanchard
  • François Fromard
  • Ulf Mehlig
  • Moirah Machado de Menezes
  • Valdenira Ferreira dos Santos
  • Uta Berger
Original Article


Key message

We estimated aboveground biomass of large mangrove trees from terrestrial Lidar measurements. This makes the first attempt to extend mangrove biomass equations validity range to trunk diameter reaching 125 cm.


Accurately determining biomass of large trees is crucial for reliable biomass analyses in most tropical forests, but most allometric models calibration are deficient in large trees data. This issue is a major concern for high-biomass mangrove forests, especially when their role in the ecosystem carbon storage is considered. As an alternative to the fastidious cutting and weighing measurement approach, we explored a non-destructive terrestrial laser scanning approach to estimate the aboveground biomass of large mangroves (diameters reaching up to 125 cm). Because of buttresses in large trees, we propose a pixel-based analysis of the composite 2D flattened images, obtained from the successive thin segments of stem point-cloud data to estimate wood volume. Branches were considered as successive best-fitted primitive of conical frustums. The product of wood volume and height-decreasing wood density yielded biomass estimates. This approach was tested on 36 A. germinans trees in French Guiana, considering available biomass models from the same region as references. Our biomass estimates reached ca. 90 % accuracy and a correlation of 0.99 with reference biomass values. Based on the results, new tree biomass model, which had R 2 of 0.99 and RSE of 87.6 kg of dry matter. This terrestrial LiDAR-based approach allows the estimates of large tree biomass to be tractable, and opens new opportunities to improve biomass estimates of tall mangroves. The method could also be tested and applied to other tree species.


Aboveground biomass Coastal blue carbon French Guiana Mangrove Terrestrial LiDAR Tree allometry 



This research was conducted under the framework of the MANGWATCH project funded by the French Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) research program “Incubator for interdisciplinary research projects in French Guiana”. Adewole Olagoke received doctoral fellowship from the European Commission under the Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctorate programme, Forest and Nature for Society (FONASO), and travel grants from the CNRS and Technische Universität Dresden Graduate Academy (Germany). Jean-Baptiste Féret is grateful to the French Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES) for supporting a postdoctoral fellowship. We thank the TOSCA program of the CNES for providing a grant to develop a 3D mock-up of mangrove trees within the framework of the BIOMASS mission preparation. This study is dedicated to the memory of Michael Guéroult, our friend and colleague, who passed away all too soon. We greatly appreciate the two anonymous reviewers for their insightful and constructive comments.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

468_2015_1334_MOESM1_ESM.docx (795 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 794 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Adewole Olagoke
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Christophe Proisy
    • 2
  • Jean-Baptiste Féret
    • 4
  • Elodie Blanchard
    • 2
  • François Fromard
    • 5
    • 6
  • Ulf Mehlig
    • 7
  • Moirah Machado de Menezes
    • 7
  • Valdenira Ferreira dos Santos
    • 8
  • Uta Berger
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Forest Growth and Computer SciencesTechnische UniversitätDresdenGermany
  2. 2.IRD, UMR-AMAPMontpellierFrance
  3. 3.Institut des sciences et industries du vivant et de l’environnement (AgroParisTech), Campus d’Agropolis InternationalMontpellierFrance
  4. 4.IRSTEA, UMR-TETISMontpellier Cedex 5France
  5. 5.INP, UPS, EcoLabUniversité de ToulouseToulouseFrance
  6. 6.CNRS, EcoLabToulouseFrance
  7. 7.Instituto de Estudos CosteirosUniversidade Federal do Pará, Campus de BragançaBragançaBrazil
  8. 8.Instituto de Pesquisas Científicas e Tecnológicas do Estado do Amapá (IEPA)MacapáBrazil

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