Artificial Intelligence Procedures for Tree Taper Estimation within a Complex Vegetation Mosaic in …

Abstract Tree stem form in native tropical forests is very irregular, posing a challenge to establishing taper equations that can accurately predict the diameter at any height along the stem and subsequently merchantable volume. Artificial intelligence approaches can be useful techniques in minimizing estimation errors within complex variations of vegetation. We evaluated the performance of Random Forest® regression tree and Artificial Neural Network procedures in modelling stem taper. Diameters and volume outside bark were compared to a traditional taper-based equation across a tropical Brazilian savanna, a seasonal semi-deciduous forest and a rainforest. Neural network models were found to be more accurate than the traditional taper equation. Random forest showed trends in the residuals from the diameter prediction and provided the least precise and accurate estimations for all forest types. This…


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