During November and December 2000, a Unitied States forestry corporate, commissioned Interpine Forestry Limited to undertake an intensive log value recovery and stand optimisation project within the Idaho state. The objective of the project was to demonstrate and investigate the applicability of log value recovery orientated systems within a US forestry setting.
A key part of the log value recovery project was the use of the MARVL pre-harvest inventory system across two logging units. The first unit contained seven species, including pine, larch, spruce and fir, while the second was predominantly Douglas fir and ponderosa pine. A team of two cruisers completed 90 plots in 8 days using a MARVL coding dictionary designed by Interpine Forestry that was specific to local log grading specifications. The data collection method, coding dictionary and field computers performed well during the trial considering that temperatures were well below 0 degrees Celsius and snow covered much of the forest.
In order to validate the accuracy of the MARVL pre-harvest inventory system in a highly variable resource, a post harvest reconciliation was done using log-bucking optimisation callipers. Reconciliation of the predicted versus actual stand volumes and grade mixes was within the Probable Limits of Error (PLE %) estimated by the MARVL system. Findings and analysis validated that the MARVL system can be accurately applied to a North West forest setting.
Due to the dynamic features of the MARVL system (i.e. cruising dictionary independent of cutting strategy and variable sections cruising method), then the potential of such a system in the Pacific North West was highly recognised. In the project report MARVL demonstrated that accurate grade mix predictions can be made in a predominantly Douglas fir and ponderosa pine stand under changing market conditions.
With an improved knowledge of local forests and wood quality requirements, MARVL would be a powerful tool for US forestry companies.