Forest Ecosystem Monitoring Cooperative

Forest Research at Harvard Forest: Timber Harvesting Field Study in Western Massachusetts 2004-2005

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  • Forest Ecosystem Monitoring Cooperative

    • Address:
      705 Spear Street
      South Burlington, Vermont 05403
      United States of America

      Phone: (802) 656-2975


    Since 1907, the Harvard Forest has served as a center for research and education in forest biology and conservation. The Forest's Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) program, established in 1988 and funded by the National Science Foundation, provides a framework for much of this activity.


  • Emery Boose: Principal Investigator


  • forest composition, forest management, forest regeneration, invasives, inventory, regeneration,


  • Harvard University Harvard Forest: lead
  • Duke Forest : partner

Geographic Coverage

  • Coordinates
    • Coordinate System

    Data Table

    • Title: Timber Harvesting Field Study in Western Massachusetts 2004-2005
    • Start Date: 2004-01-01
    • End Date: 2005-12-31
    • Description: Forest harvesting is one of the most significant disturbances affecting forest plant composition and structure in Western Massachusetts, yet few studies have quantified the effects of harvesting in this region. Massachusetts requires all commercial harvest operations above 87 m3 to file a Forest Cutting Plan (FCP) with the state. We have digitized these FCPs (see McDonald et al. 2006), covering all harvests from 1984 to 2003. Our study area is Massachusetts, west of the coastal basin, as defined by Motts and O’Brian (1981). We selected 126 sites for sampling. Two-thirds of the sites (89) were harvested once between 1984 and 2003, and these were selected randomly from the larger FCP database. The remaining one-third of the sites (37) were control sites selected randomly from all unharvested forest in the study area. The boundaries for our field surveys were those filed with the FCP for harvested sites, and were circular for control sites, proportional in size to the mean FCP in the physiographic region (Motts and O'Brien 1981): Connecticut River Valley (10.7 ha), Central Upland (11.3 ha), Berkshire Valley and Taconic Mountains (12.6 ha), and the Western Upland (15.9 ha). Note that our sampled sites were well-dispersed over the study area, and encompassed the variety of past agricultural land-use.

    • Purpose: This study was created to quantify the effects of forest harvesting in Western Massachusetts.

    • Condensed Title:

    • Object Name: VMC.1387.2862

    • Data Type: mySQL
    • Citation: Kittredge D, Foster D, McDonald R. 2009. Timber Harvesting Field Study in Western Massachusetts 2004-2005. Harvard Forest Data Archive: HF127. Available at:

    • Online Distribution:

    Attribute List

      Attribute Name: species
      • Label: Species field in the HF Timber Harvesting datasets
      • Description: Species field in the Harvard Forest Timber Harvesting Field Study sapling, seedling and herb datasets (HF127)
      • Storage Type: text
      • Measurment Type: nominal
      • Species List: Harvard Forest - timber harvesting field study western massachusetts
        • Code: Abies balsamea
          • Definition: ITIS #18032, balsam fir (Abies balsamea)
        • Code: Acer pennsylvanicum
          • Definition: ITIS #28754, striped maple (Acer pensylvanicum)
        • Code: Acer rubrum
          • Definition: ITIS #28728, red maple (Acer rubrum)
        • Code: Acer saccharum
          • Definition: ITIS #28731, sugar maple (Acer saccharum)
        • Code: Amelanchier spp.
          • Definition: ITIS #25108, serviceberry (Amelanchier )
        • Code: Betula alleghanensis
          • Definition: ITIS #19481, yellow birch (Betula alleghaniensis)
        • Code: Betula lenta
          • Definition: ITIS #19487, sweet birch (Betula lenta)
        • Code: Betula papyrifera
          • Definition: ITIS #19489, paper birch (Betula papyrifera)
        • Code: Betula populifolia
          • Definition: ITIS #19497, gray birch (Betula populifolia)
        • Code: Carya cordiformis
          • Definition: ITIS #19227, bitternut hickory; pignut (Carya cordiformis)
        • Code: Carya glabra
          • Definition: ITIS #19231, pignut hickory; sweet pignut (Carya glabra)
        • Code: Carya ovata
          • Definition: ITIS #19242, shagbark hickory (Carya ovata)
        • Code: Carya sp.
          • Definition: ITIS #19223, hickory spp (Carya )
        • Code: Carya tomentosa
          • Definition: ITIS #19247, mockernut hickory (Carya tomentosa)
        • Code: Castanea dentata
          • Definition: ITIS #19454, American chestnut (Castanea dentata)
        • Code: Crataegus sp.
          • Definition: ITIS #24539, hawthorn (Crataegus )
        • Code: Fagus grandifolia
          • Definition: ITIS #19462, American beech (Fagus grandifolia)
        • Code: Fraxinus americana
          • Definition: ITIS #32931, white ash (Fraxinus americana)
        • Code: Fraxinus spp.
          • Definition: ITIS #32928, ash (Fraxinus )
        • Code: Juglans cinerea
          • Definition: ITIS #19250, butternut (Juglans cinerea)
        • Code: Juniperus sp.
          • Definition: ITIS #18047, juniper; cedar (Juniperus )
        • Code: Juniperus virginiana
          • Definition: ITIS #18048, eastern red cedar (Juniperus virginiana)
        • Code: Malus domestica
          • Definition: ITIS #516655, ( Malus domestica)
        • Code: Malus sp.
          • Definition: ITIS #25254, apple (Malus )
        • Code: Nyssa sylvatica
          • Definition: ITIS #27821, black gum, black tupelo, blackgum (Nyssa sylvatica)
        • Code: Ostyra virginiana
          • Definition: ITIS #19511, eastern hophornbeam; hophornbeam (Ostrya virginiana)
        • Code: Picea rubens
          • Definition: ITIS #18034, red spruce (Picea rubens)
        • Code: Pinus resinosa
          • Definition: ITIS #183375, red pine (Pinus resinosa)
        • Code: Pinus rigida
          • Definition: ITIS #183376, pitch pine (Pinus rigida)
        • Code: Pinus strobus
          • Definition: ITIS #183385, eastern white pine (Pinus strobus)
        • Code: Populus grandidentata
          • Definition: ITIS #22463, bigtooth aspen (Populus grandidentata)
        • Code: Populus tremuloides
          • Definition: ITIS #195773, quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides)
        • Code: Prunus serotina
          • Definition: ITIS #24764, black cherry (Prunus serotina)
        • Code: Quercus alba
          • Definition: ITIS #19290, white oak (Quercus alba)
        • Code: Quercas coccinea
          • Definition: ITIS #19288, scarlet oak (Quercus coccinea)
        • Code: Quercus rubra
          • Definition: ITIS #19408, northern red oak (Quercus rubra)
        • Code: Quercus spp.
          • Definition: ITIS #19276, oak (Quercus )
        • Code: Quercus velutina
          • Definition: ITIS #19447, black oak (Quercus velutina)
        • Code: Quercus prinus
          • Definition: ITIS #195058, chestnut oak ( Quercus prinus)
        • Code: Rhamnus cathartica
          • Definition: ITIS #28573, Carolina buckthorn; European buckthorn; European waythorn; Hart's thorn; nerprun cathartique; common buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica)
        • Code: Rhamnus frangula
          • Definition: ITIS #28579, glossy buckthorn (Rhamnus frangula)
        • Code: Rhus spp.
          • Definition: ITIS #28772, sumac (Rhus sp.)
        • Code: Robinia pseudoacacia
          • Definition: ITIS #504804, black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia)
        • Code: Sassafras albidum
          • Definition: ITIS #18158, sassafras (Sassafras albidum)
        • Code: Tilia americana
          • Definition: ITIS #21536, American basswood (Tilia americana)
        • Code: Tsuga canadensis
          • Definition: ITIS #183397, Canada hemlock; hemlock spruce (Tsuga canadensis)
        • Code: Ulmus americana
          • Definition: ITIS #19049, American elm (Ulmus americana)
        • Code: Ulmus rubra
          • Definition: ITIS #19050, slippery elm (Ulmus rubra)
        • Code: Unknown
          • Definition: ITIS #823, (Radiocystis )


    • No methods recorded for this dataset

    Sampling Equipment

    • No sampling equipment recorded for this dataset

    Site Characteristics

    • No site characteristics recorded for this dataset