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This report and associated guidelines focus on the amount and type of woody biomass that should be retained in the forest after a harvest operation to protect soil productivity, water quality, and site-level biodiversity. Woody biomass, defined from a forest operations perspective, is comprised of logging residues, previously unmerchantable stems, and other such woody material harvested directly from the forest typically for the purposes of energy production. In the broadest sense woody biomass is the total mass of roots, stem, branches, bark and leaves of all tree and shrub species (live and dead) in the forest. Under the broad definition all forest products could be considered as woody biomass, but in practice a forest operations perspective is more appropriate for this initiative. Harvest of woody biomass is often integrated with traditional forest operations, so it can be difficult to isolate effects of woody biomass removals at a site level. As such, it is important to consider retention of woody biomass during all harvest activities and to emphasize post-harvest site condition rather than the amount of any given product removed during harvest.
Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station
forest biomass, forest management, timber harvesting
Forest Management | Forest Sciences
Benjamin, J.G. (ed.) 2010. Considerations and Recommendations for Retaining Woody Biomass on Timber Harvest Sites in Maine. Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station Miscellaneous Publication 761.