Testing a large-scale forestry scenario model by means of successive inventories on a forest property
Modellers of large-scale forestry scenario models face numerous challenges. Information and sub-models from different disciplines within forestry, along with statistical and mathematical methodology, have to be considered. The individual biological sub-models (i.e. models for recruitment, growth and mortality) applied in large-scale forestry scenario models are in general well documented and extensively evaluated. However, evaluations by means of full-scale comparisons of observed and predicted values for continuous forest areas, where the totality of the large-scale forestry scenario model including interactions between sub-models and other parts of the model, are considered, have rarely been seen. The aim of the present work was to test the totality of the Norwegian large-scale forestry scenario model AVVIRK-2000, and thereby evaluate the applicability of the model for use in management planning. The test was done by means of successive inventories and accurate recordings of treatments over a period of 30 years for a property comprising 78.5 ha forest-land. Seen in the perspective of management planning, the differences between observed and predicted values for potential harvest level, growing stock and growth were small, e.g. a difference between observed growing stock in year 2000 and growing stock in the same year predicted from 1970 of 2.6%. The model may therefore be applied for practical purposes without any fundamental changes or calibrations of the biological model basis. However, the present test should be seen as an example that failed to falsify the model, rather than a final validation. As long as the model is in practical use, further evaluations should continue and subsequent possible calibrations should be performed.
Received 21 November 2003 Accepted 28 May 2004 Published 31 December 2004