Österreichische Bundesforste BOKU Institut für Waldbau, Dr. Katherina Kaiblinger, Dr. Alexander Urban
BOKU, Institut für Waldbau
The initiation of natural regeneration is one of the most important but also most difficult tasks in the management of semi-natural forests. The extent of benefit from light absorption has a major impact on the regenerative success of beechwoods and oakwoods. With the project started in late 2012, BOKU (University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences) contributed to resolving the question in what way regeneration interventions ought to be dealt with. To this end, mature beech and oak stands in the core zone areas of the BR were examined for regenerative success under a great variety of light-ecological conditions.
Some of the core zones which are exempt from commercial use, changed very rapidly. Especially wind-throw resulted in massive accumulations of deadwood in some of the core zones. Apart from regeneration issues, researchers also looked into temporal changes and the decomposition dynamics of deadwood. In order to observe and make scientific records of the natural decomposition of wood, a deadwood decomposition trial was set up outside the core zones. In addition, deadwood from beech trees and oak trees was examined in the BR’s core zones. The purpose was to improve the assessment of the age of deadwood in various stages of decomposition, and to explore the impact of various deadwood conditions on the decomposition process.
The outcomes from research into the progress of regeneration in core zones were compared with outcomes from beechwoods and oakwoods managed in different ways. The purpose was to improve silvicultural management and regeneration concepts for beech and oak in the Wienerwald. The project was carried out by the Institut für Waldbau in co-operation with the BPWW Management GmbH and the Austrian Federal Forestry Authority (ÖBf AG).