Warra is an important component and the southernmost member of a national network of study plots to monitor ecosystem changes at a continental scale, organised by TERN across rangelands and forests within Australia.
Four 1-ha plots have been established at Warra as part of an Australian network – AusPlots Forests – of 48 one-ha plots in tall eucalypt forests. This plot network builds on an extensive, but disparate, inventory plot network established by State-based forest management agencies. It will provide high-quality and nationally-consistent data to track growth, productivity and dynamics (recruitment and mortality) of mature (> 70 years old), tall eucalypt forests through time and across large climatic gradients.
All trees > 10cm diameter (at 1.3 m) are identified to species, their diameter measured, their location within the 1 ha plot mapped, their growth stage (e.g. regenerating, regrowth, mature, senescent) determined. Height measurements are taken of a sample of the overstorey and understorey trees. Standing dead trees are also recorded and where possible cause of death attributed. Hemisperical canopy photographs are taken to determine leaf area index.
It is planned the plots will be remeasured every 3-5 years.