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Structure and Dynamics of the Forest Reserves of the Republic of Karelia

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V.A. Anan'ev, S.A. Moshnikov

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"The distribution of the state forest reserves according to the land categories is analyzed. The long-term (60 years) dynamics of the forested area has been traced. The species composition of the Karelian forests is characterized. The pine forests dominate in the Republic (65 % of the state forest reserves); spruce forests occupy 23 %, deciduous forests – 12 %. The analy-sis of the age structure demonstrates the uneven distribution of the conifer plantations ac-cording to the age classes. The share of the ripening stands is low (7 %), which complicates the long-term planning for the sustainable forest management in the Republic. The ecologi-cal spectrum of the Karelian forests is quite wide and represented by 16 major forest types,
ranging from the poor Sphagnum types to the most productive sorrel types. The myrtillus-type predominates among the spruce stands (63 % of the area occupied by the species). Pine stands are represented by the vaccinium and myrtillus forest types (36 and 32 %, respective-ly). The intensive harvesting of productive coniferous plantations has resulted in the accu-mulation of the low-quality stands. Up to 40 % of coniferous stands fall into the V, Va-Vb quality classes, and feature the low standing crop. Stands of the V–Vа quality classes are most unique to the pine and spruce stands of the Sphagnum and haircap-moss types; stands of the III and IV classes – for the vaccinium and myrtillus forest types. Up to 75 % of the area occupied by the deciduous species feature high productive growth conditions (II-III quality classes). The analysis of the long-term forest dynamics has demonstrated the de-crease of the proportion of pine stands over the period of the intensive forest use (1951–1983), whereas the area and share of deciduous stands have been constantly increasing. Ex-tensive harvested areas were left for the natural reforestation, and coniferous species have been replaced by deciduous species. As a result, the total area occupied by the latter in-creased 1.5-fold and their standing stock grew 2.9-fold. Studying the dynamics of planta-tions productivity over 60 years has shown a significant increase in the standing stock of young pine and spruce stands. But the average stock of pine and spruce stands in general dropped by 23 and 19 %, respectively. The active forestry measures are needed to improve the state forest reserves. They should raise the forest productivity, enhance the species composition and a uniform distribution according to the age groups, as well as to accelerate the ripening of the middle-aged forests by the targeted tending."


V.A. Anan'ev, Сandidate of Agricultural Sciences S.A. Moshnikov, Сandidate of Agricultural Sciences


Forestry Research Institute of Karelian Research Centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Pushkinskaya str., 11, Petrozavodsk, 185910, Russian Federation; е-mail:,


forest reserves, structure, dynamics, productivity, forest management.


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Received on June 04, 2015

Structure and Dynamics of the Forest Reserves of the Republic of Karelia


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