Next Article in Journal
The Use of Wood Chips for Revitalization of Degraded Forest Soil on Young Scots Pine Plantation
Next Article in Special Issue
Landscape Patterns of Rare Vascular Plants in the Lower Athabasca Region of Alberta, Canada
Previous Article in Journal
Cascade Use of Wood in the Czech Republic
Previous Article in Special Issue
Monitoring Broadscale Vegetational Diversity and Change across North American Landscapes Using Land Surface Phenology
Open AccessArticle

Quantification of Lichen Cover and Biomass Using Field Data, Airborne Laser Scanning and High Spatial Resolution Optical Data—A Case Study from a Canadian Boreal Pine Forest

Applied Conservation Ecology Lab, Department of Renewable Resources, Faculty of Agriculture, Life, and Environmental Sciences, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB T6G 2H1, Canada
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2020, 11(6), 682;
Received: 16 May 2020 / Revised: 11 June 2020 / Accepted: 11 June 2020 / Published: 16 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Forest Biodiversity Conservation with Remote Sensing Techniques)
Ground-dwelling macrolichens dominate the forest floor of mature upland pine stands in the boreal forest. Understanding patterns of lichen abundance, as well as environmental characteristics associated with lichen growth, is key to managing lichens as a forage resource for threatened woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou). The spectral signature of light-coloured lichen distinguishes it from green vegetation, potentially allowing for mapping of lichen abundance using multi-spectral imagery, while canopy structure measured from airborne laser scanning (ALS) of forest openings can indirectly map lichen habitat. Here, we test the use of high-resolution KOMPSAT (Korea Multi-Purpose Satellite-3) imagery (280 cm resolution) and forest structural characteristics derived from ALS to predict lichen biomass in an upland jack pine forest in Northeastern Alberta, Canada. We quantified in the field lichen abundance (cover and biomass) in mature jack pine stands across low, moderate, and high canopy cover. We then used generalized linear models to relate lichen abundance to spectral data from KOMPSAT and structural metrics from ALS. Model selection suggested that lichen abundance was best predicted by canopy cover (ALS points > 1.37 m) and to a lesser extent blue spectral data from KOMPSAT. Lichen biomass was low at plots with high canopy cover (98.96 g/m2), while almost doubling for plots with low canopy cover (186.30 g/m2). Overall the model fit predicting lichen biomass was good (R2 c = 0.35), with maps predicting lichen biomass from spectral and structural data illustrating strong spatial variations. High-resolution mapping of ground lichen can provide information on lichen abundance that can be of value for management of forage resources for woodland caribou. We suggest that this approach could be used to map lichen biomass for other regions. View Full-Text
Keywords: lichen; biomass; pine; remote sensing; woodland caribou lichen; biomass; pine; remote sensing; woodland caribou
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Hillman, A.C.; Nielsen, S.E. Quantification of Lichen Cover and Biomass Using Field Data, Airborne Laser Scanning and High Spatial Resolution Optical Data—A Case Study from a Canadian Boreal Pine Forest. Forests 2020, 11, 682.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

Search more from Scilit
Back to TopTop