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A Provincial Correlation of Regional Forest Vegetation Potential and Brush Hazard Interpretations

Author(s) or contact(s): G.J. Harper, C. Pehl, P.G. Comeau, and J.O. Boateng
Source: Research Branch
Subject: Vegetation Management
Series: Working Paper
Other details:  Published 1999. Hardcopy is available.


A database has been compiled from regional site identification and interpretation field guides to summarize vegetation management interpretations for the ecosystems of British Columbia. This project summarized existing vegetation potential, brush hazard, and vegetation complex interpretations to evaluate similarities and differences of interpretations applied to similar ecosystems in different forest regions. Three sorts of the database are given and the results summarized by (1) site association, (2) biogeoclimatic ecological classification (BEC) variant and site series (BEC units), and (3) vegetation potential / brush hazard.

Regional field guide vegetation potential descriptions were compared and found to be similar in nature but dissimilar in content. The range and frequency of vegetation potential are given for approximately 72% of the BEC units within British Columbia. Most of the extreme to high vegetation potential entries occurred in the CWH, ESSF, ICH, and SBS zones. The CWH zone was the most important zone in terms of high or greater vegetation potential rating.

Information gaps in the database need to be addressed for greater confidence in the interpretations. Truthing of these interpretations are recommended with operational practices to test the accuracy of the original vegetation potential descriptions. The possibility of a provincially standardized set of vegetation potential definitions is discussed. Standard definitions would provide a framework for planning and communication at the local, regional, and provincial levels. Two rating systems are discussed based on crop value impact or a value-neutral, site biomass potential concept.

Working Paper 41 (698 KB)

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Updated July 24, 2015