European Journal of Forest Research

, Volume 124, Issue 2, pp 143–153 | Cite as

Modelling mortality of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) plantations in the northwest of Spain

  • Ulises Diéguez-ArandaEmail author
  • Fernando Castedo-Dorado
  • Juan Gabriel Álvarez-González
  • Roque  Rodríguez-Soalleiro
Original Paper


Mortality is an important element of growth and yield models, especially if only low intensity silvicultural treatments are carried out. The objective of the present study was to develop a model for predicting tree number decline in planted even-aged stands of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) in Galicia (northwestern Spain). The model was constructed using data from two inventories of a trial network involving 68 permanent plots located in unthinned stands, or stands thinned lightly from below. Two alternatives were tested. In one alternative, a two-step modelling strategy was applied. First, a binary response function predicting the survival probability of all the trees in the stand was constructed, and an equation for reduction in tree number was developed, using only data where death had occurred over the period analyzed. Three different approaches were then used to compare the application of the above-mentioned functions together. In the other alternative, a mortality function for directly predicting the reduction in tree number was fitted, including all plots (with and without occurrence of mortality). Both alternatives provided similar results, showed logical behavior, and performed satisfactorily in evaluation tests. However, in choosing the best strategy for inclusion in a stand-level simulator, the use of the second alternative is recommended because it possesses the path invariance property required in a mortality model.


Mortality Pinus sylvestris Logistic regression Tree-number reduction Even-aged forest stand 



Funding for this research was provided by the Ministry of Science and Technology through project AGL2001-3871-C02-01 “Crecimiento y evolución de masas de pinar en Galicia”. Helpful review comments were provided by three anonymous referees. Christine Francis checked the English.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ulises Diéguez-Aranda
    • 1
    Email author
  • Fernando Castedo-Dorado
    • 2
  • Juan Gabriel Álvarez-González
    • 1
  • Roque  Rodríguez-Soalleiro
    • 3
  1. 1.Departamento de Ingeniería AgroforestalUniversidad de Santiago de Compostela, Escuela Politécnica SuperiorLugoSpain
  2. 2.Departamento de Ingeniería AgrariaUniversidad de León, Escuela Superior y Técnica de Ingeniería AgrariaPonferradaSpain
  3. 3.Departamento de Producción Vegetal Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Escuela Politécnica SuperiorLugoSpain

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