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Mixed-effects height–diameter models for ten conifers in the inland Northwest, USA

Curtis L VanderSchaaf


To demonstrate the utility of mixed-effects height–diameter models when conducting forest inventories, mixedeffects height–diameter models are presented for several commercially and ecologically important conifers in the inland Northwest of the USA. After obtaining height–diameter measurements from a plot/stand of interest, these mixed-effects models can be calibrated to produce localised individual tree height estimates. An example of model calibration is provided. Based on model calibration results using independent data, the use of three to five trees for a particular species from a plot to calibrate the model will likely provide a reasonable compromise between predictive ability and field sampling times. If calibrated at the stand level, three trees could be used but larger sample sizes of 10 or 15 for an individual species may be reasonable. Similar mixed-effects height–diameter models could also be developed for species in the Southern Hemisphere.

Southern Forests 2014, 76(1): 1–9