Composition of live, dead and downed trees in Järvselja old-growth forest

Ahto Kangur, Kristi Nigul, Allar Padari, Andres Kiviste, Henn Korjus, Diana Laarmann, Eneli Põldveer, Risto Mitt, Lee E. Frelich, Kalev Jõgiste, John A. Stanturf, Teele Paluots, Vivika Kängsepp, Harli Jürgenson, Steffen M. Noe, Allan Sims, Marek Metslaid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The study area is in the Järvselja Training and Experimental Forest Centre, Estonia. The conservation of Järvselja old-growth forest started in 1924 when the area was excluded from all management activities and left to natural development. The aim of this study is to analyse the methods for calculating single tree height, tree stem lateral surface area, tree volume and carbon content for standing live trees, standing dead trees and for downed deadwood in old-growth forests. The study used the data of 6205 live trees, 1119 snags, 270 standing dead trees and 2983 deadwood trunks from the measured area. The most abundant tree species in Järvselja old-growth forest were Norway spruce and linden. During the last hundred years, the number of dominating tree species has increased slightly. The standing volume of birch, common aspen and Scots pine have been declining while for linden and black alder it has been increasing. In the comparison of tree height curves, the best results were obtained with the Näslund function, however, the Chapman-Richards function with fitting showed slightly better results for two tree species.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15-40
Number of pages26
JournalForestry Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank numerous students, fieldwork staff and researchers for their input related to the measurements in Järvselja old-growth forest. The fieldwork and measurements in the Järvselja old-growth forest compartment were supported by The Estonian Environmental Investment Centre and Järvselja Training and Experimental Forest Centre. The research was supported by The Estonian Environmental Investment Centre, by the European network for observing our changing planet project (ERA-PLANET, grant agreement no. 689443) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program, Estonian Ministry of Sciences projects (grant nos. P180021, P180274), by the Estonian Research Infrastructures Road-map Project “Estonian Environmental Observatory” (3.2.0304.11-0395), and the Estonian Research Council grant (PRG1586).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Ahto Kangur et al., published by Sciendo.


  • CWD
  • H-D allometry
  • biodiversity traits
  • carbon content
  • natural forest
  • stem volume


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