Current issue: 53(2)

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Silva Fennica 1926-1997
Acta Forestalia Fennica

Articles containing the keyword 'moss'.

Category: Research article

article id 77, category Research article
Annie Claude Bélisle, Sylvie Gauthier, Dominic Cyr, Yves Bergeron, Hubert Morin. (2011). Fire regime and old-growth boreal forests in central Quebec, Canada: an ecosystem management perspective. Silva Fennica vol. 45 no. 5 article id 77.
Boreal forest management in Eastern Canada has caused depletion and fragmentation of old-growth ecosystems, with growing impacts on the associated biodiversity. To mitigate impacts of management while maintaining timber supplies, ecosystem management aims to narrow the gap between natural and managed landscapes. Our study describes the fire history and associated natural old-growth forest proportions and distribution of a 5000 km2 area located in the black spruce-feather moss forest of central Quebec. We reconstructed a stand-origin map using archival data, aerial photos and dendrochronology. According to survival analysis (Cox hazard model), the mean fire cycle length was 247 years for the 1734–2009 period. Age-class distribution modelling showed that old-growth forests were present on an average of 55% of the landscape over the last 275 years. The mean fire size was 10 113 ha, while most of the burned area was attributable to fires larger than 10 000 ha, leading to old-growth agglomerations of hundreds of square kilometres. In regards to our findings, we propose ecosystem management targets and strategies to preserve forest diversity and resilience.
  • Bélisle, Centre for Forest Research, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada ORCID ID:E-mail: (email)
  • Gauthier, Laurentian Forestry Centre, Canadian Forest Service, Natural Resources Canada, Sainte-Foy, Québec, Canada ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Cyr, Institut Québécois d’Aménagement de la Fort Feuillue, Université du Québec en Outaouais, Ripon, Québec, Canada ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Bergeron, Centre for Forest Research, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada & NSERC-UQAT-UQAM Industrial Chair in Sustainable Forest Management, Université du Québec en Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Rouyn-Noranda, Québec, Canada ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Morin, Département des Sciences Fondamentales, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi, Chicoutimi, Québec, Canada ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 296, category Research article
Samuel Roturier, Sofia Bäcklund, Maria Sundén, Urban Bergsten. (2007). Influence of ground substrate on establishment of reindeer lichen after artificial dispersal. Silva Fennica vol. 41 no. 2 article id 296.
Methods to improve the recovery of reindeer lichen after soil disturbance or overgrazing are being sought for areas where reindeer are herded. The effects of four substrates – mineral soil, moss, twigs and pine bark – on the establishment of lichen fragments after total removal of the vegetation were thus studied in a middle-aged pine stand and a clear-cut, both located in a lichen-rich pine-heath. Cladina mitis fragments of two sizes were manually dispersed in 1 m2 quadrats and their movements from their respective dispersal points were registered after one year. The natural re-establishment of lichens in the quadrats was monitored over three years by using digital pictures. In the forest stand, no significant differences were detected in either the fragment movement or the lichen establishment between the different substrates, but the fragment size had positive effects on both parameters. In the clear-cut, the moss substrate was the most suitable not only for the artificially dispersed lichens to fasten to, but also for the natural settlement of lichens from the surrounding lichen mat. More lichen thalli fastened to the bark and twigs substrates than to the mineral soil, but the settlement of lichens from the surrounding was greater on bare mineral soil substrate. The results indicate that artificial dispersal of lichen thalli on an appropriate substrate could be a successful strategy for promoting lichen recovery.
  • Roturier, SLU, Vindeln Experimental Forests, Svartberget Fältstation, SE-922 91 Vindeln, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail: (email)
  • Bäcklund, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Sundén, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Bergsten, SLU, Dept of Forest Ecology, SE-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:

Category: Research note

article id 678, category Research note
Ian A. Nalder, Ross W. Wein. (1998). A new forest floor corer for rapid sampling, minimal disturbance and adequate precision. Silva Fennica vol. 32 no. 4 article id 678.
We describe an effective and inexpensive device for sampling forest floors. It is based on a rechargeable, battery-powered drill that drives a sharpened steel coring tube. The corer is simple to fabricate, is lightweight (3.5 kg) and can be used easily by one person to obtain intact, natural volume cores of the forest floor. It has been used extensively to obtain samples in 114 boreal forest stands of western Canada. We found that coefficients of variation were typically 30% for forest floor organic matter and bulk density, and tended to be higher in Pinus banksiana stands than in Picea glauca and Populus tremuloides. Ten samples per stand gave adequate precision for a study of forest floor dynamics and autocorrelation did not appear to be a problem with five-metre sampling intervals. In addition to sampling forest floors, the corer has proven suitable for sampling moss and lichen layers and mineral soil down to about 20 cm. A similar powered system can also be used for increment boring of trees.
  • Nalder, University of Alberta, Department of Renewable Resources, 442 Earth Sciences Building, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6G 2E3 ORCID ID:E-mail: (email)
  • Wein, University of Alberta, Department of Renewable Resources, 442 Earth Sciences Building, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6G 2E3 ORCID ID:E-mail:

Category: Article

article id 7490, category Article
Valter Keltikangas. (1959). Suomalaisista seinäsammaltyypeistä ja niiden asemasta Cajanderin luokitusjärjestelmässä. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 69 no. 2 article id 7490.
English title: Finnish feather-moss types and their position in Cajander’s forest site classification .

Since Finnish professor A.K. Cajander published his theory on forest types, there have been discussion and contradictory studies on certain forest types. This paper is a litterature review on the thick-moss type in Northern Finland and its parallel types in Kainuu and Southern Finland. First, the principles of Cajander’s theory on forest types is described and discussed. It is concluded that Cajander has described forest site types as their common, genuine variants. Borderline variants have been excluded from the description. 

Second, the North Finnish thick-moss type (Hylocomnium-Myrtillus type, HMT) and its position in Cajander’s system is discussed. Concepts of this forest type have varied considerably, and it has been argued that the type does not fit Cajander’s system very well, as it arises as a result of the invasion of other forest types by Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) with consequent degeneration of the site.  

The writer concludes findings of the results of the previous studies about MHT and its relations to the Myrtillus type. Cajander in his system included the thick-moss type in the moist upland forests as a type whose vegetation is less exacting than that of the Myrtillus type. This position seems to be the right one. Some factors point out the moist nature of HMT: the ability of Norway spruce to compete, a relatively high persipitation, the humidity of the climate in general and the rather poor water percolation capacity of the moraine soil. The HMT sites are relatively poor. It is stated that the opinion that the thick-moss type is secondary state of development of the Myrtillus type has no plant sociological, ecological, mensurational or silvicultural foundation. The type is probably Finland's most dynamic forest type, but in the natural forest its dynamics are confined to such changes as are permitted within the same forest type. HMT must be described as three series of plant association types, which differ from another to some extent. 

The PDF includes a summary in English. 

  • Keltikangas, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 5399, category Article
Raisa Mäkipää. (1994). Effects of nitrogen fertilization on the humus layer and ground vegetation under closed canopy in boreal coniferous stands. Silva Fennica vol. 28 no. 2 article id 5399.

Forest ecosystems may accumulate large amounts of nitrogen in the biomass and in the soil organic matter. However, there is increasing concern that deposition of inorganic nitrogen compounds from the atmosphere will lead to nitrogen saturation; excess nitrogen input does not increase production. The aim of this study was to determine the long-term changes caused by nitrogen input on accumulation of nitrogen in forest soils and in ground vegetation.

The fertilization experiments used in this study were established during 1958–1962. They were situated on 36- to 63-year-old Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) and Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) stands of different levels of fertility. The experiments received nitrogen fertilization 5–7 times over a 30-year period, and the total input of nitrogen was 596–926 kg/ha.

Nitrogen input increased the amount of organic matter in the humus layer and the nitrogen concentration in the organic matter. Furthermore, the total amount of nutrients (N, P, K, Ca and Mg) bound by the humus layer increased due to the increase in the amount of organic matter. However, nitrogen input decreased the biomass of ground vegetation. The nitrogen concentration of the plant material on the nitrogen-fertilized plots was higher than on the control plots, but the amount of nutrients bound by ground vegetation decreased owing to the drastic decrease in the biomass of mosses. Ground vegetation does not have the potential to accumulate nitrogen, because vegetation is dominated by slow-growing mosses and dwarf shrubs which do not benefit from nitrogen input.

  • Mäkipää, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 5343, category Article
R. J. K. Rinne, A. I. Mäkinen. (1988). Regional and species variations in metal content of two woodland mosses Pleurozium schreberi and Hylocomium splendens in Finland and northern Norway. Silva Fennica vol. 22 no. 1 article id 5343.

The woodland mosses Pleurozia shcreberi (Willd. ex Brid.) Mitt. and Hylocomnium splendens (Hedw.) Schimp. were used in air pollution monitoring. During late summer and autumn 1977, 44 samples of Pleurozia shcreberi were collected in semi-open coniferous forests from Southern Finland (60°N) to Northern Finland and Northern Norway (70°N). Additional 26 samples of Hylocomnium splendens were collected in similar places south of 61°30’N. Analysis of both moss species revealed decreasing concentration gradients from south to north for Cu, Fe, Pb and Zn. Conversely, Mn and Mg levels increased with latitude, while Ca did not change significantly. Some decreasing west to east concentration gradients for Cu, Zn and Pb were measured in P. schreberi and in H. splendends collected from Southern Finland.

A comparison between these two mosses showed significant differences in Cu content (ave. 22% higher in H. splendends) and Zn content (ave. 8% higher in P. schreberi). However, the differences were considered minor in relation to regional differences in Finland.

In local study of emissions from the Koverhar steel works in Southern Finland, Fe and Zn concentrations in P. schreberi and H. splendens were found to decrease significantly with increasing distance up to 6 kilometres north and south of the source.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

  • Rinne, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Mäkinen, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 5194, category Article
Tapio Lindholm, Matti Nummelin. (1983). Changes in the community structure of forest floor vegetation after repeated litter disturbance by raking. Silva Fennica vol. 17 no. 3 article id 5194.

The tolerance of disturbance of the ground and field layer vegetation in a moderately fertile Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) on Oxalis-Myrtillus type forest in Southern Finland was studied. One of the sites, a summer cottage yard had been raked regularly during the last 25 years. The structure of the vegetation was quite different compared to the other sample site situated in a virgin forest. The phytomass and percentual coverage of the vegetation was remarkable lower in the raked habitat. Tall mosses, Pleuroxium schreberi and Hylocomnium splendens had especially disappeared. Most grass shrubs had also deteriorated. Only Deschampsia flexuosa was quite tolerant to raking. The phytomass of the dwarf shrubs was lower in the raked area but their relative production was higher. Three different kinds strategies of species were described: species of virgin shaded forest, species of meadow-like forest floor and species which tolerate or benefit from disturbance. The raked habitat had a higher species diversity than the virgin area. Nitrogen and carbon contents were lower in the soil of the raked area.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

  • Lindholm, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Nummelin, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 5145, category Article
Torleif Bramryd. (1981). Environmental effects of heavy metals distributed from power plants. Silva Fennica vol. 15 no. 4 article id 5145.

Increased prices on oil have resulted in the search for alternative energy sources, e.g. coal, peat, biomass, different types of waste. Combustion especially of waste, coal and peat emits large quantities of air pollutants such as heavy metals but also harmful organic substances. Heavy metals are not easily separated from the smoke, and the concentrations are often high in the emissions even with advanced fly-ash separators.

Ecological investigations carried out around a coal burning power plant in Finland using mosses and pine needles as parameters are presented in the paper. Increased concentrations of Pb, Cd, Cr, Ni, Cu and V have been found near the plant. Often a clear gradient was found with increased concentrations at decreased distance from the power plant.

  • Bramryd, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 5144, category Article
Lennart Folkeson. (1981). Impact of air-borne copper and zinc pollution on lichen and bryophyte vegetation near a brass foundry. Silva Fennica vol. 15 no. 4 article id 5144.

Air-borne Cu and Zn from a brass foundry at Gusum, SE Sweden, have considerably disturbed the lichen and bryophyte vegetation in the coniferous forest environment. The occurrence of lichens on Norway spruce twigs decreased rapidly with increasing Cu concentrations in Hypogymnia physodes above 90 ppm (background value 10–15). The epiphytic vegetation is reduced within 2–3 km from the foundry. Only stunted individuals occur in the close vicinity of the pollution source.

The cover of one of the quantitatively most important mosses, Hylocomnium splendens, is greatly reduced by the heavy-metal deposition. Cover values of 20–50% are not uncommon in distant sites (Cu concentration 15–35 ppm). There is a significant negative correlation between Cu concentration in the moss and its cover. The moss cannot survive much more than ca. 130 ppm Cu (and 360 ppm Zn). Live individuals are no more found within 1.5 km from the foundry.

  • Folkeson, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 4964, category Article
Seppo Kellomäki, Pertti Hari, Eero Väisänen. (1977). Annual production of some forest mosses as a function of light available for photosynthesis. Silva Fennica vol. 11 no. 1 article id 4964.

The aim of the present paper was to study the annual production of Pleurozium schreberi (Brid.) Mitt., Hylocomnium splendens (Hedw.) B.S.G and Dicranum polysetum Sw. as a function of light available for photosynthesis. The productivity of the above moss species is studied using the harvested quadrats method in Norway spruce (Picea abies) stands of the Myrtillus site type representing different stand density classes (basal area from 0 to 34 m2/ha) in Southern Finland.

The annual production of each species in different stands was correlated with the amount of light available for photosynthesis i.e. with the photosynthetic production. Functions for the dependence of productivity on light conditions were produced for each species. The individual functions and their ecological significance is discussed. The adaptation of each species to low light intensity is evident since no meaningful addition to production takes place when the photosynthetic light ratio reaches values greater than 0.3–0.4. In other words, the level of photosynthesis which is 30–40% of that possible in the open, provides sufficient supply of carbohydrates or the basic functions of the moss species studied. Pleurozium schreberi and Dicranum polysetum seem to have greater light requirements than Hylocomnium splendens.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

  • Kellomäki, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Hari, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Väisänen, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 4953, category Article
Seppo Kellomäki, Pertti Hari. (1976). Rate of photosynthesis of some forest mosses as a function of temperature and light intensity and effect of water content of moss cushion on photosynthetic rate. Silva Fennica vol. 10 no. 4 article id 4953.

The photosynthetic rate of Pleurosium schreberi (Willd.), Hylocomnium splendens (Hedw.) and Dicranum undulatum (Sw.) grown in plastic containers was monitored with infrared gas analyser in open air under natural weather conditions. It proved that the photosynthetic rate of wet moss cushions was satisfactorily predicted by temperature and light intensity. In dry moss cushions this kind of model gave too high an estimate for photosynthetic rate. Water requirements of each moss species were found to be moderate, and water content of moss cushions limited photosynthetic rate only under serious water deficiency.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

  • Kellomäki, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Hari, ORCID ID:E-mail:

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