The Evolution of Forest Inventory

James D Arney · Mark V Corrao

   For nearly two centuries’ foresters have worked within the constraints of data and time to build representative ‘inventories’ that describe the spatial and structural variations of a forest to make actionable decisions. At the core of describing these variations are tree size, number, spatial distribution and species which all vary across any landscape and are essential components of a working forest inventory.

  The quantification of forest density and structure comprises assessing forest stands across the landscape to provide a baseline set of functional metrics that describe the standing volume of similarly forested areas. Describing forests as ‘stands’, and including multiple parameters expressed on a per acre basis, has provided a long and very successful foundation for communication throughout the forestry profession for more than a century.

  Stands are defined as forested areas stratified into similar tree sizes by density and species class. These are often the result of judgments made by an experienced field forester with the aid of available maps and aerial imagery. The value of differences in height and/or density tallied by stand, and occurring between stands, is by design and helps to define components of the forest to achieve management objectives. These ‘stand-based’ metrics, when presented on a per acre basis, continue today to constitute the primary means of communicating forest conditions between ownerships and across geographic regions.

A novel smartphone-based activity recognition modeling method for tracked equipment in forest operations

Ryer M. Becker · Robert F. Keefe

Activity recognition modelling using smartphone Inertial Measurement Units (IMUs) is an underutilized resource defining and assessing work efficiency for a wide range of natural resource management tasks. This study focused on the initial development and validation of a smartphone-based activity recognition system for excavator-based mastication equipment working in Ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) plantations in North Idaho, USA. During mas-tication treatments, sensor data from smartphone gyroscopes, accelerometers, and sound pressure meters (decibel meters) were collected at three sampling frequencies (10, 20, and 50 hertz (Hz)). These data were then separated into 9 time domain features using 4 sliding window widths (1, 5, 7.5 and 10 seconds) and two levels of window overlap (50% and 90%). Random forest machine learning algorithms were trained and evaluated for 40 combinations of model parameters to determine the best combination of parameters. 5 work elements (masticate, clear, move, travel, and delay) were classified with the performance metrics for individual elements of the best model (50 Hz, 10 second window, 90% window overlap) fall-ing within the following ranges: area under the curve (AUC) (95.0% – 99.9%); sensitivity

(74.9% – 95.6%); specificity (90.8% – 99.9%); precision (81.1% – 98.3%); F1-score (81.9% -96.9%); balanced accuracy (87.4% – 97.7%). Smartphone sensors effectively characterized individual work elements of mechanical fuel treatments. This study is the first example of developing a smartphone-based activity recognition model for ground-based forest equip-ment. The continued development and dissemination of smartphone-based activity recognition models may assist land managers and operators with ubiquitous, manufacturer-independent systems for continuous and automated time study and production analysis for mechanized forest operations.

Use of Individual Tree and Product Level Data to Improve Operational Forestry

Robert F. Keefe · Eloise G. Zimbelman · Gianni Picchi

Abstract: Individual Tree Detection (ITD) algorithms that use Airborne Laser Scanning (ALS) data can provide accurate tree locations and measurements of tree-level attributes that are required for stand-to-landscape scale forest inventory and supply chain management. While numerous ITD algorithms exist, few have been assessed for accuracy in stands with complex forest structure and composition, limiting their utility for operational application. In this study, we conduct a preliminary assessment of the ability of the ForestView® algorithm created by Northwest Management Incorporated to detect individual trees, classify tree species, live/dead status, canopy position, and estimate height and diameter at breast height (DBH) in a mixed coniferous forest with an average tree density of 543 (s.d. ±387) trees/hectare. ITD accuracy was high in stands with lower canopy cover (recall: 0.67, precision: 0.8) and lower in stands with higher canopy cover (recall: 0.36, precision: 0.67), mainly owing to omission of suppressed trees that were not detected under the dominant tree canopy. Tree species that were well-represented within the study area had high classification accuracies (producer’s/user’s accuracies > ~60%). The similarity between the ALS estimated and observed tree attributes was high, with no statistical difference in the ALS estimated height and DBH distributions and the field observed height and DBH distributions. RMSEs for tree-level height and DBH were 0.69 m and 7.2 cm, respectively. Overall, this algorithm appears comparable to other ITD and measurement algorithms, but quantitative analyses using benchmark datasets in other forest types and cross-comparisons with other ITD algorithms are needed.

RT-130 Fire Refresher Training Courses 2022

Annual RT-130 Fire Refresher courses are held in February – April. The 2022 training schedule is posted below. Please check back for course updates. 

If you have any questions email

RT-130 course

April 21st, 2022 – Grangeville Senior Center – 9 am
May 12th, 2022 – Grangeville Senior Center – 9 am
May 20th, 2022 – Moscow Latah County Fairgrounds – 9 am

For participants that need a Work Capacity Test (WCT): Please bring your own pack, Northwest Management, Inc. will not provide packs.

Strategic Partnership Announcement

NW Land & Lifestyle Properties and Northwest Management, Inc. Announce Strategic Partnership

Northwest Management, Inc. (NMI) a distinguished forestry consulting firm in the northwest and Northwest Land & Lifestyle Properties, the most experienced timberland and rural real estate firm in the Northwest, announced today a new strategic partnership.

Together, the companies have combined unparalleled knowledge and experience to create a higher level of real estate and land management consulting services for property buyers and sellers in Washington, Idaho and Montana. The partnership will provide a one-stop shop for landowners, real estate investors and people looking to buy or sell timberland, farmland, hunting land and recreational properties. Both NMI and NLLP are dedicated to landowners and buyers and sellers of land with the goal of helping them achieve the success they are looking for.

“We have had a long-standing relationship with NMI, but chose to further develop it into a strategic partnership because it will allow each of us to provide an even higher level of service to our customers and clients in a much larger geographic area,” said Tom Moore, owner and broker of Northwest Land & Lifestyle Properties . “Our marketing services will have a reach unmatched by any other real estate organization in the Northwest.”

“Our vision is to strengthen the real estate services we can provide to our existing client base” said Vincent Corrao, President of NMI. “NMI welcomes the opportunity to work more closely with NLLP.” We regard this as an important step forward in meeting the expectations of our clients and building our real estate brand.”

Learn more about Northwest Land & Lifestyle Properties go to www.nwlandlifestyle.com and to learn more about Northwest Management, Inc., visit www.northwestmanagement.com.

About Northwest Land & Lifestyle Properties

Northwest Land & Lifestyle Properties – is the leading, fully integrated network of conventional and auction real estate professionals. The company has been an innovator in lifestyle and country real estate marketing since 1925. Northwest Land & Lifestyle Properties  has a combined network that supports more than 500 offices and 6,000 real estate professionals, with a unique, comprehensive marketing program. The exclusive program includes the highest ranked and largest portfolio of national, state, office, agent and specialty property marketing websites, unequaled national print advertising, a comprehensive internal real estate advertising agency, an extensive buyer database of nearly one million opt-in buyers and additional proprietary programs to advertise properties more broadly.

About Northwest Management, Inc.

Northwest Management, Inc. is a leader in forestland and environmental management, providing expertise in forestry, wildfire, water resources, wildlife, hazard management & planning for over 30 years. Northwest Management, Inc. is a well-seasoned team of resource professionals and a leader in the use of cutting-edge technology to develop natural resource inventories, resource and land management plans.

Lidar-Assisted Forest Inventory

Lidar-Assisted Forest Inventory

LiDAR – Light Detection and Ranging. For all land owners and managers interested in measurement of the location and height of each tree across their landscape, we offer the FOR-D LiDAR- Assisted forest census.

This is an individual tree digital forest that can easily be viewed, downloaded or separated into specific units or areas on a desktop or laptop computer. The FOR-D inventory requires LiDAR acquisition custom specifications and field data using fixed radius plots each with a submeter GPS center and 100% measurement of all trees for increased accuracy and precision of individual tree species, DBH, height, volume comma and many other features these deep digital forests are set up for input into growth and yield models that provide the accuracy needed for valuation an investment calculations, wildfire mitigation and avoid cost calculations, transportation and harvest and management feasibility assessments, as well as forestry wildlife hydrology and recreation planning.

Carbon Programs and Offsets

Carbon Programs and Offsets

For private and tribal land managers interested in a Carbon Offset project we provide fixed radius permanent for test inventory plots. These are often located with a sub meter GPS system and 100% inventoried for increased precision of tree volumes, growth, forest structure and valuation. These plot data are then used as a sample to estimate the inventory across an ownership and calculate the Carbon Offset Credits the forest can provide to efforts addressing Changing Climate conditions.

Continuous Forest Inventory (CFI)

We focus on traditional grid sampling forest measurement methods. Where fixed radius permanent forest inventory plots are monumented and each tree is tagged. These plots are often subsampled comma and the data are modeled across the landscape for a sampled inventory estimate. These plots are revisited on a 10 year frequency to monitor growth, vigor, mortality comma and volume overtime period this information is used primarily for forest wide planning and management.

Variable Radius Plots (VRP)

Variable Radius Plots (VRP)

For small land owners and those not interested in the latest and greatest technology:

We focus on traditional forest measurement methods, forest inventory sample, growth and yield projections, harvest volumes, management plans, fire fuel reductions, seedling planting comma and financial valuations for land purchases and sales