Botanica Pacifica

Research paper

Botanica Pacifica. A journal of plant science and conservation Preprint
Article first published online: 01 MAY 2019 | DOI: 10.17581/bp.2019.08115

The first record of catastrophic windthrow in boreal forests of South Sakhalin and the South Kurils (Russia) during October 2015 tropical cyclones

Kirill A. Korznikov 1, Dmitriy E. Kislov 1 & Nadezhda G. Belyaeva 2

1 Botanical Garden-Institute FEB RAS, Vladivostok, Russia
2 Institute of Geography RAS, Moscow, Russia

Tropical cyclones that swept across South Sakhalin and the southern part of the Kuril Islands in early October of 2015 produced strong winds and heavy precipitation. They resulted in large-scale windthrow patches in zonal dark-conifer forests dominated of Abies sachalinensis and Picea jezoensis, as well as secondary forests of various composition. We identified the distribution of these windthrows, estimated their area, and assessed the total wood biomass loss. Forest change area and wood biomass data by Global Forest Watch project was used for the analysis. Through comparison examination of these data with satellite images of very-high resolution we established that windthrows located on Sakhalin Island are recognized with high accuracy, while their area on the Kuril Islands is presented significantly lower than the area of actual damages. We recommend using methods of higher precision level for future windthrow identifications on the Kuril Islands. The total area of windthrows on Sakhalin was calculated at 425.98 km2 with the wood mortality of 4.72∙106 tons. We found no significant correlation between windthrow patch distribution and local topographic conditions such as elevation above sea level and slope gradient. At the same time, forests growing on slopes with western exposure on Sakhalin Island revealed greater damage which is correlated with the wind direction during the disturbance events.

Корзников К.А., Кислов Д.Е., Беляева Н.Г. Массовые ветровалы в темнохвойных бореальных лесах юга Сахалина и Южных Курил вследствие прохождения тропических циклонов в октябре 2015 года. Тропические циклоны, прошедшие над южной частью Сахалина и южными Курильскими островами в начале октября 2015 года, вызвали сильные ветра и обильные осадки. Результатом их воздействия стало появление масштабных ветровалов в зональных темнохвойных лесах из Abies sachalinensis и Picea jezoensis, а также вторичных лесах различного состава. Мы определили размещение ветровальных участков, оценили их площадь и общие потери древесины. Для этого использовали данные Global Forest Watch о сокращении лесной площади и биомассе древесины. Сравнив эти данные с изображениями космических снимков сверхвысокого разрешения установили, что ветровальные участки на Сахалине распознаются достаточно точно, а на Курильских островах их площадь существенно ниже реальной. Для идентификации ветровалов на Курилах следует использовать более утонченные методы. Общая площадь ветровалов на Сахалине составила 425.98 км2, а масса погибшей древесины – 4.72∙106 тонн. Мы не обнаружили явно выраженной зависимости между распределением ветровалов и топографическими условиями – высотой над уровнем моря и крутизной склонов. В то же время на Сахалине сильнее оказались нарушены леса склонов западной экспозиции, что связано с преобладающим направлением ураганных ветров.

Keywords: windthrow, forest disturbance, forest loss, tropical cyclone, typhoon, ветровал, нарушение леса, потеря леса, тропический циклон, тайфун



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