The National Inventory and Monitoring Application Center and Forest Plan Monitoring and Evaluation

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1 The National Inventory and Monitoring Application Center and Forest Plan Monitoring and Evaluation Chip Scott, Manager National Inventory and Monitoring Application Center Northern Research Station USDA Forest Service

2 Background Meeting with The Nature Conservancy, NatureServe, the National Park Service, and NY to discuss how to collect FIA compatible information on their lands. NFS monitoring coordinators and Planners have expressed strong interest in developing a monitoring planning tool with standard protocols to help ensure that data are collected in a scientifically defensible and cost effective manner

3 Creation of NRS The North Central and Northeastern Research Stations are combining to form Northern Research Station (NRS). Administration functions combined. Research Work Units remain unchanged FIA has been combined under Dennis May. Allowed the creation of the National Inventory and Monitoring Application Center.

4 National Inventory and Monitoring Application Center Mission: To develop leading edge forest ecosystem inventory and monitoring methods and tools to help FIA and other organizations monitor forests, resulting in comparable results across the landscape. Conduct research on measurements, indicators, and efficient sampling and estimation methods. Develop application methods and tools, such as the Monitoring Toolkit FIA compatible, but enhanced.

5 Monitoring Research Methods to make existing monitoring more efficient, such as optimal plot design Develop new measures and make them operational, such as Montreal C&I Methods to bridge gap between regional FIA survey and mid scale planning needs Methods to bridge gap between mid scale monitoring and stand level inventory Methods to prioritize stand exams Small area estimation methods

6 Attribute and Spatial Data Resolution Framework Spatial Resolution Low High Attribute Resolution Low FIA Data and Standard Analysis Products Intensified FIA Data and Regional Analytical Methods CSE Data Polygon Summary Data Imputation Methods knn / MSN / Gradient NN High

7 National Inventory and Monitoring Application Center Methods are NOT A replacement for stand level inventories (Common Stand Exam) A social or economic inventory system A wildlife inventory (other than habitat) A water quality inventory Will not focus on management prescriptions or management tracking

8 How the National Inventory and Monitoring Application Center Can Help Help develop affordable Monitoring Plans, especially for vegetation related objectives Collaboratively develop efficient Project monitoring tools Provide scientifically defensible methods Provide compatible and consistent methods for comparison to forest matrix (context) and aggregation to ecoregion, Region, and national levels. Use FIA data to address national needs. Provide tools to implement the methods and to generate annual and 5 year reports

9 Monitoring Toolkit Planning Tool to identify monitoring needs, and to specify sampling design to balance cost and precision. Portable Data Recorder Tool software on PDR to collect, validate, and transfer data. Database and Compilation Tool to store and compute calculated fields Spatial / Tabular Analytical Tool use standard methods or spatial means of specifying area to for which to estimate tables.

10 The Planning Tool The Planning Tool could help with the first 9 monitoring steps 1. Set broad objectives pick from a list of desired conditions or outcomes 2. Set specific objectives pick from a list of questions and tables to address them 3. Select attributes tool lists the attributes needed to make the tables chosen 4. Set time/cost and precision constraints FIA has some experience data on cost, or enter local data. Specify precision for key attributes.

11 The Planning Tool 5. Assemble and evaluate existing data specify the area, then the tools use FIA data to compute estimates and their variability 6. Select sampling and plot designs based on objectives, tool specifies which portions of FIA plot need to be measured, or what components need to be added. It can be used to develop an optimal plot design. Based on the plot design chosen, it then determines sample size.

12 Field Planning 7. Select plots tool would select plot locations based on chosen sample size and sampling rules. 8. Plan field work tool would select text needed for the field manual 9. Train provide training materials and field training, as needed. Follow up QA/QC is an option.

13 The PDR Tool 10.Collect data Portable Data Recorder software can be customized in combination with the Planning Tool. 11.Enter and store data the data should be entered and checked while in the field using PDR software, then transferred electronically to the office.

14 The Database/Compilation Tool 12.Compile data the compilation tool computes derived variables, such as basal area or biomass, and stores in an easy to use database FSVeg or a generalized version of FIA s National Information Management System (NIMS).

15 The Analytical Tool 13.Assess and interpret data use the spatial/tabular analytical tool to ask questions of the data and compare the study area to the forest matrix.

16 Select plots by: Features (polygons) User defined polygon Features in table Distance from linear features

17 Final Steps in Adaptive Management 14.Evaluate objectives and monitoring protocol 15. Decide on future management

18 Partnering Opportunities Remote Sensing Applications Center has involved the NMP in the Superior National Forest study of remote sensing for stand estimation Potential test of competitive technology on Allegheny National Forest Meeting with Mark Twain National Forest & R8 on developing prototype Monitoring Plan and associated attribute maps eastern pilot Expertise in plot and sampling design, biometrics, programming, GIS, remote sensing, forest health monitoring, and analysis

19 Thoughts / Questions? Contact: Chip Scott National Inventory and Monitoring Application Center USDA Forest Service 11 Campus Blvd., Suite 200 Newtown Square, PA

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