Series of articles on the natural disturbance dynamics of Central European temperate old-growth forests. The results revealed the importance of intermediate disturbance patterns (e.g. windthrow) for the coexistence of silver fir, Norway spruce, beech, and accompanying species. Some articles have been published in leading European (Journal of Vegetation Science) and U.S. ecological journals (Ecological applications). Much of our understanding of natural forest dynamics in the temperate region of Europe is based on observational studies in old-growth remnants that have emphasized small-scale gap dynamics and equilibrium stand structure and composition. Little attention has been given to the role of infrequent disturbance events in forest dynamics. This study used dendroecological data across an old-growth landscape in the Dinaric Mountains of Bosnia and Herzegovina to examine disturbance history, tree life history traits, and community dynamics. Over all stands, most decades during the past 340 years experienced less than 10% canopy loss, yet each stand showed evidence of periodic intermediate severity disturbances that removed ) 40% of the canopy, some of which were synchronized over the study area landscape. Analysis of radial growth patterns indicated that beech had a significantly longer lifespan than fir, yet fir was able to tolerate longer periods of suppressed growth in shade. Maple had the fasted radial growth and reached the canopy primarily through rapid early growth in canopy gaps. Less shade tolerant species (i.e. maple, ash, and elm) recruited successfully on some of the windthown sites where advance regeneration of beech and fir was less abundant. The results challenge the traditional notions of stability in temperate old-growth of Europe and highlight the non-equilibrial nature of canopy composition due to unique histories of disturbance and tree life history differences. Examples of other articles dealing with the above topics: FIRM, Dejan, NAGEL, Thomas Andrew, DIACI, Jurij. Disturbance history and dynamics of an old-growth mixed species mountain forest in the Slovenian Alps. Forest Ecology and Management. Currently, there is interest in restoring the structure and composition of some mountain forests towards presettlement conditions. One of the tasks is to gain a better understanding of the natural disturbance processes that affect these forests. We reconstructed the dynamics of a mixed old-growth stand using a combination of age structure and dendroecological analyses, and historical evidence of past human activities. The results suggest that periodic, intermediate severity wind disturbances may have had an important influence on forest dynamics in the Alps also in the past. SVOBODA, Miroslav, NAGEL, Thomas Andrew, et al. Landscape-level variability in historical disturbance in primary Picea abies mountain forests of the Eastern Carpathians, Romania. Journal of vegetation science. Of the two growth pattern criteria used to assess past disturbance, gap recruitment was the most common, representing 80% of disturbance evidence overall. Disturbance severities varied over the landscape, including stand-replacing events, as well as low- and intermediate-severity disturbances. More than half of the study plots experienced extreme-severity disturbances at the plot level, although they were not always synchronized across stands and landscapes. Plots indicating high-severity disturbances were often spatially clustered (indicating disturbances up to 20 ha), while this tendency was less clear for low- and moderate-severity disturbances. Physiographic attributes such as altitude and land form were only weakly correlated with disturbance severity. Historical documents suggest windstorms as the primary disturbance agent, while the role of bark beetles (Ips typographus) remains unclear. The historical disturbance regime revealed in this multi-scale study is characterized by considerable spatial and temporal heterogeneity,
Several articles on forest stands, ungulates and predators. The results indicated a great and diverse spatio-temporal impact of large herbivorous ungulates throughout history. Studies of habitat requirements and management of wild-life suggest possible solutions for the future management. According to the Habitats Directive of the European Union, a favourable conservation status for the brown bear (Ursus arctos) should be targeted at the population level in large contiguous habitats such as the Alps, the largest mountain range in Europe. However, in most of the Alps brown bears are extinct and habitat suitability in these areas is often questionable. In our study, radioracking data from four projects with 42 individual bears was compiled to assess habitat suitability. Discrete choice models with random bear effects were fitted and compared to results obtained from compositional analysis and logistic regression. Sound definition of the available area in the discrete choice model turned out to be essential. Brown bears showed a preference for forested and steep habitats and an avoidance of roads. Results from the three approaches were used to predict habitat suitability across the entire range of the Eastern Alps. Minimum potential population size was projected based on observed densities in Trentino and Central Austria, and ranged from 1228 to 1625 individuals, with 518 to 686 mature bears. This would satisfy a favourable conservation status. The developed methodology also has wide applicability to quantification of habitat suitability and potential population size in other cases where species are at risk. Examples of other articles dealing with the above topics: ADAMIČ, Miha, JERINA, Klemen. Ungulates and their management in Slovenia. V: APOLLONIO, Marco (ur.), ANDERSEN, Reidar (ur.), PUTMAN, Rory (ur.). European ungulates and their management in the 21st century. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010, str. 507-526. Manuscript is a part of peer reviewed monography, published by reputable publisher. It is systematically covering wild ungulate species from all European countries, including Slovenia and is written especially for experts and researchers. We report past and present status of all autochthonous and alochthonous wild ungulate species in Slovenia, management practices, monitoring methods used for management, intensity and principles of supplemental feeding, ungulate damage monitoring methods, means of damage reduction and success of ungulate management in the country are also described. Klopčič, Matija; Jerina, Klemen; Bončina, Andrej, 2009. Long-term changes of structure and tree species composition in Dinaric uneven-aged forests: are red deer an important factor? European Journal of Forest Research. The study of Dinaric silver fir-European beech forests used archival data from old forest management plans for the period 1789-2004 and red deer harvesting records for the period 19072006. In the analysed period, the fir population aged and fir and beech alternated in dominance. The study revealed a strong impact of red deer on the composition and density of tree regeneration, especially on silver fir regeneration. The changes in red deer density and past forest management practices were the main factors driving the population dynamics of fir in the study area during the past 2 centuries. American Society of Mammalogists.; Journal of mammalogy; 2012; Vol. 93, no. 4; str. 11391148; Impact Factor: 1.614;Srednja vrednost revije / Medium Category Impact Factor: 1.303; A': 1; WoS: ZM; Avtorji / Authors: Jerina Klemen Most studies on the relationship between homerange size and composition focus on natural factors, whereas effects of anthropogenic factors are poorly understood. Manuscript evaluates effects of multiple natural and anthropogenic habitat factors, population density, and sex on the annual homerange size of red deer in well preserved forests in the Dinaric Mountains of Slovenia. The homerange size decreased
Based on the results of the program group, a series of articles about the spatial and temporal distribution patterns of silver fir and beech tree species in commercial forests has been published. Articles reveal the mechanisms behind past forest management on the stand and population structure of the most important tree species in Slovenia. The findings are important for assessing changes in the structure of forests in the future and to develop guidelines for forest management. Spatiotemporal dynamic of European beech was analysed using data acquired from information system SilvaSi. Beech expanded its area by more than 1200 ha per year on average and its proportion in growing stock increased from 27% to 32%. Expansion was more pronounced at lower altitudes, on sites with steep topography, and on sites with a higher proportion of beech in potential natural vegetation. The distance to the nearest compartment with beech and the proportion of early successional phases influenced its expansion. The developmental dynamics indicates a further expansion of beech. Examples of other articles dealing with the above topics: Elsevier; Forest Ecology and Management; 2011; Vol. 261, no. 4; str. 844-854; Impact Factor: 1.992;Srednja vrednost revije / Medium Category Impact Factor: 0.992; A': 1; WoS: KA; Avtorji / Authors: Ficko Andrej, Poljanec Aleš, Bončina Andrej. Based on the spatial information system SilvaSI, we analysed for changes in the distribution of silver fir (Abies alba Mill.) in the period 1970-2008 using artificial neural networks (ANN), with respect to site, stand, and forest management variables. Most selected indicators confirmed the hypothesis of fir decline in the period 1970-2008, as evidenced by: i) reduced area of forests with a share of fir in the total growing stock ) 25% (from 18.9% to 9.5% of total area), ii) reduced share of fir in the growing stock of forest stands (from 17.5% to 7.5%), iii) ageing of the fir population, and iv) disproportionate share of fir saplings in total saplings relative to fir’s share in the growing stock of forest stands. A 1.5 % increase in fir distribution area in the observed period contradicts the decline hypothesis. ANN showed that spatiotemporal dynamics of fir was most affected by four variables: forest type, share of fir in potential natural vegetation, mean annual precipitation and mean annual temperature. The latter two, together with growing stock at the start of study period, connectedness of fir stands and bedrock, were significant predictors of decline of fir abundance in forest stands. Forest types represent a complex of site conditions and past forest management. The observed shift in fir distribution and changes in its abundance in the period 1970-2008 indicate impact of climate change. Elsevier; Forest Ecology and Management; 2012; Vol. 284; str. 142151; Impact Factor: 2.487;Srednja vrednost revije / Medium Category Impact Factor: 1.086; A': 1; WoS: KA; Avtorji / Authors: Klopčič Matija, Poljanec Aleš, Bončina Andrej In the study, data from a Slovenian forest inventory (67,563 plots, 200 m2 each) were used to develop a twostage beech recruitment model. In the first stage a probability model of beech recruitment was estimated with binary logistic regression, while in the second stage a conditional model for beech recruitment rate was derived. A tree was classified as recruited if it had crossed a threshold of 10 cm in its dbh. On average, 2.5 beech ha1 y1 overgrew the measurement threshold, representing 38% of the total recruitment. High variability in beech recruitment was observed (CV=274%). Among 21 independent variables, three stand, one site, two climate, two forest management, and one wildlife variable were included into the models – eight in the probability model, seven in the conditional model, six of which were included in both models. Beech recruitment was negatively related to stand basal area and mean diameter and positively related to the proportion of beech
A series of articles published in top journals (A ") on the application of optimization methods and operations research in the field of life sciences with particular emphasis on forestry. The main problem in group AHP is to aggregate the individual judgements, i.e., the individual comparison matrices, into a group matrix, respectively into a group priority vector. The paper is focused on the acceptable consistency of such aggregation, that is also very important when dealing with participatory decision making in forestry. We were interested in the question: is the group matrix of acceptable consistency if all individual matrices are of acceptable consistency, or if some of them are not of acceptable consistency. The necessary and sufficient conditions for the aggregated group matrix to be of acceptable consistency were set up. We studied the theorem: if all individual pairwise comparison matrices of m decision makers for n alternatives are acceptably consistent, then the group matrix aggregated by the use of WGMM (weighted geometric mean method) is of acceptable consistency. This theorem was presented and first proved by Xu (2000, EJOR), and Lin et al. (2008, EJOR) rejected the proof. As we find the theorem important since it has been used in many applications, in this paper we provided a new proof. Further, we derived the upper bound for the consistency ratio which depends only on determinants of individual comparison matrices and the importance of decision makers' opinions. For two decision makers the interval for , i.e., the importance of first decision maker's opinion, is given for aggregated matrix to be of acceptable consistency. Examples of other articles dealing with the above topics: LIPUŠČEK, Igor, BOHANEC, Marko, OBLAK, Leon, ZADNIK STIRN, Lidija. A multicriteria decision making model for classifying wood products with respect to their impact on environment. Int. j. life cycle assess., 2010, vol. 15, no. 4, str. 359-367. Presented is a decision support model for classifying wood products according to their influence on the environment in their whole life cycle, including wood characteristics, such as the use of natural and renewable material and storing of carbon in wood. The model uses a multicriteria approach AHP methodology. The aggregation of parameters is carried out by utility functions on the basis of 52 experts’ findings which were gathered with Delphi method. The results show that the most problematic are preservatives, coating systems and glues. GROŠELJ, Petra, PEZDEVŠEK MALOVRH, Špela, ZADNIK STIRN, Lidija. Methods based on data envelopment analysis for deriving group priorities in analytic hierarchy process. Central European Journal of Operations Research, ISSN 1435-246X, 2011, vol. 19, iss. 3, str. 267-284. In recent years, group decision making has become one of the important issues in multiple criteria decision making, and analytic hierarchy process (AHP) is considered an appropriate method when dealing with this kind of problems. Many different approaches for attaining a group valuation in AHP have been developed. The applications most commonly employ the weighted geometric mean method. In the paper, we focus on the group AHP methods, which are based on the data envelopment analysis (DEA). First we discuss two methods for deriving a group priority vector: Wang and Chin’s DEA group method and Hosseinian et al.’s DEA-WDGD. Further, we propose a new WGMDEA method and compare all three methods with the WGMM on theoretical examples and on a real case study. The objective of the case study is to examine the current state of forest owners’ cooperatives. An analysis of the influence of forest owners’ cooperatives on private forest management in Slovenia was put forward. The A’WOT analysis, which is a combined method of AHP and SWOT analysis, an approach for identifying the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the object under consideration, was performed.
Series of articles on the topic of forest health published in top journals (A ') dealing with forest protection. Ophiostomatoid fungi can severely affect the health and economic value of Picea abies. There is not much information about the diversity of ophiostomatoid species and their associations with insects in southeastern Europe. This study aims to investigate the assemblages of ophiostomatoid fungi associated with Ips typographus, Ips amitinus, and Pityogenes chalcographus that infect Norway spruce in Slovenia. Bark beetles were sampled in four phytogeographic regions in Slovenia. The fungi found on the bark beetles were identified based on morphology, DNA sequence comparisons of ITS regions and phylogenetic analysis. The species compositions of the fungi were analysed and the pairwise associations of the occurrence of the fungal species were compared. Thirteen different species were found. The most commonly encountered fungal on the beetles were Ophiostoma bicolor, Ophiostoma brunneociliatum, Grosmannia piceiperda, Ophiostoma ainoae, Ceratocystiopsis minuta, and Grosmannia penicillata. The composition of the fungal associates differed among the bark beetle species, but not among the phytogeographic regions. This study confirms that ophiostomatoid species are common associates of the investigated bark beetle species. Many ophiostomatoid species have strong host associations. I. typographus and P. chalcographus can act as effective vectors for O. bicolor, O. ainoae, G. piceiperda and O.brunneociliatum, whereas I. amitinus often carries G. piceiperda and C. minuta in Slovenian forests. Examples of other articles dealing with the above described topics: Forest pathology; 2012; Vol. (v tisku), no. (v tisku); str. (v tisku); Impact Factor: 1.740;Srednja vrednost revije / Medium Category Impact Factor: 1.086; A': 1; WoS: KA; Avtorji / Authors: Gajšek Domen, Jarni Kristjan, Brus Robert To our knowledge, our study is the first detailed study of the infection and spreading patterns of parasitic woody species Arceuthobium oxycedri (DC.) M. Bieb. in Europe. Eleven mixed populations of Juniperus oxycedrus L. and Juniperus communis L. were inventoried for the presence of A. oxycedri infections. Both J. oxycedrus and A. oxycedri are rare and distributed in marginal populations in Slovenia. The dimensions of A. oxycedri specimens were surprisingly large and often exceeded 25 cm in diameter, the largest even measuring up to 40 cm. Six juniper populations out of eleven were infected, and the proportion of infected host individuals in these ranged from 29.17 up to 82.93 %. The proportion of infected J. communis specimens was 54.90 %, which is surprisingly high for this species. We identified a different, more localized pattern of infection for J. communis. Usually, only a single infection was present and was most common on the trunk in the middle third of the crown and much less common on the branches. As some of our findings are new, they are likely to contribute to future research of A. oxycedri, in particular in Europe. We assume that A. oxycedri will continue to slowly spread in Slovenia, primarily in areas where it is already present, however its control in our country is probably not yet necessary. OGRIS, Nikica, JURC, Maja. Sanitary felling of Norway spruce due to spruce bark beetles in Slovenia : a model and projections for various climate change scenarios. Ecol. model.. [Print ed.], 2010, vol. 221, no. 2, str. 290-302. A model is presented to predict sanitary felling of Norway spruce due to Ips typographus and Pityogenes chalcographus according to different climate change scenarios over a period until 2100, in 10year intervals. It was developed using the M5 model tree with the basic spatial unit of 1 km2, and the time resolution is 1 year. The results of the model support the hypothesis that bark beetles provoke greater damage to Norway spruce planted out of its native range in Slovenia.