The mid-latitude ecotone (MLE)-a transition zone between boreal and temperate forests, which includes the regions of Northeast Asia around 30°-60° Nlatitudes-delivers different ecosystem functions depending on different management activities. In this study, we assessed forest volume and net primary productivity changes in the MLE of Northeast Asia under different ecological characteristics, as well as various current management activities, using the BioGeoChemistry Management Model (BGC-MAN). We selected five pilot sites for pine (Scots pine and Korean red pine; Pinus sylvestris and P. densiflora), oak (Quercus spp.), and larch forests (Dahurian larch and Siberian larch; Larix gmelinii and L. sibirica), respectively, which covered the transition zone across the MLE from Lake Baikal, Russia to Kyushu, Japan, including Mongolia, Northeast China, and the Korean Peninsula. With site-specific information, soil characteristics, and management descriptions by forest species, we established their management characteristics as natural preserved forests, degraded forests, sandy and cold forest stands, and forests exposed to fires. We simulated forest volume (m3) and net primary productivity (Mg C ha-1) during 1960-2005 and compared the results with published literature. They were in the range of those specified in previous studies, with some site-levels under or over estimation, but unbiased estimates in their mean values for pine, oak, and larch forests. Annual rates of change in volume and net primary productivity differed by latitude, site conditions, and climatic characteristics. For larch forests, we identified a high mountain ecotype which warrants a separate model parameterization. We detected changes in forest ecosystems, explaining ecological transition in the Northeast Asian MLE. Under the transition, we need to resolve expected problems through appropriate forest management and social efforts.
- BioGeoChemistry Management Model (BGC-MAN)
- Growing stock volume (GSV)
- Mid-Latitude Ecotone (MLE)
- Net primary productivity (NPP)
- Process-based ecosystem model
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