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Article

Electromagnetic Induction Is a Fast and Non-Destructive Approach to Estimate the Influence of Subsurface Heterogeneity on Forest Canopy Structure

1
Sorbonne Université, UPMC, CNRS, EPHE, UMR 7619 METIS, 4 Place Jussieu, 75005 Paris, France
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INRAE, URFM, Domaine Saint Paul, INRAE Centre de Recherche PACA, 228 Route de l’Aérodrome, CS 40509, Domaine Saint-Paul, Site Agroparc, 84914 Avignon, France
3
INRAE, UMR 1114 EMMAH, Domaine Saint Paul, INRAE Centre de Recherche PACA, 228 Route de l’Aérodrome, CS 40509, Domaine Saint-Paul, Site Agroparc, 84914 Avignon, France
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Albert Casas Ponsati
Water 2021, 13(22), 3218; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223218
Received: 30 August 2021 / Revised: 20 October 2021 / Accepted: 1 November 2021 / Published: 13 November 2021
The spatial forest structure that drives the functioning of these ecosystems and their response to global change is closely linked to edaphic conditions. However, the latter properties are particularly difficult to characterize in forest areas developed on karst, where soil is highly rocky and heterogeneous. In this work, we investigated whether geophysics, and more specifically electromagnetic induction (EMI), can provide a better understanding of forest structure. We use EMI (EM31, Geonics Limited, Ontario, Canada) to study the spatial variability of ground properties in two different Mediterranean forests. A naturally post-fire regenerated forest composed of Aleppo pines and Holm oaks and a monospecific plantation of Altlas cedar. To better interpret EMI results, we used electrical resistivity tomography (ERT), soil depth surveys, and field observations. Vegetation was also characterized using hemispherical photographs that allowed to calculate plant area index (PAI). Our results show that the variability of ground properties contribute to explaining the variability in the vegetation cover development (plant area index). Vegetation density is higher in areas where the soil is deeper. We showed a significant correlation between edaphic conditions and tree development in the naturally regenerated forest, but this relationship is clearly weaker in the cedar plantation. We hypothesized that regular planting after subsoiling, as well as sylvicultural practices (thinning and pruning) influenced the expected relationship between vegetation structure and soil conditions measured by EMI. This work opens up new research avenues to better understand the interplay between soil and subsoil variability and forest response to climate change. View Full-Text
Keywords: hydrogeophysics; electromagnetic induction; electrical resistivity tomography; ecohydrology; Mediterranean forest; critical zone hydrogeophysics; electromagnetic induction; electrical resistivity tomography; ecohydrology; Mediterranean forest; critical zone
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MDPI and ACS Style

Carrière, S.D.; Martin-StPaul, N.K.; Doussan, C.; Courbet, F.; Davi, H.; Simioni, G. Electromagnetic Induction Is a Fast and Non-Destructive Approach to Estimate the Influence of Subsurface Heterogeneity on Forest Canopy Structure. Water 2021, 13, 3218. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223218

AMA Style

Carrière SD, Martin-StPaul NK, Doussan C, Courbet F, Davi H, Simioni G. Electromagnetic Induction Is a Fast and Non-Destructive Approach to Estimate the Influence of Subsurface Heterogeneity on Forest Canopy Structure. Water. 2021; 13(22):3218. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223218

Chicago/Turabian Style

Carrière, Simon D., Nicolas K. Martin-StPaul, Claude Doussan, François Courbet, Hendrik Davi, and Guillaume Simioni. 2021. "Electromagnetic Induction Is a Fast and Non-Destructive Approach to Estimate the Influence of Subsurface Heterogeneity on Forest Canopy Structure" Water 13, no. 22: 3218. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223218

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