Evaluation of different modeling approaches for total tree-height estimation in Mediterranean Region of Turkey
Efficient management of timber resources and wood utilization practices require accurate and versatile information about important characteristics of forest resources for evaluating the numerous management and utilization alternatives for timber resources. Tree height is considered one of the most useful variables along with stocking and diameter at breast height, in estimating forest stand wood volumes and productivity. Six nonlinear growth functions were fitted to tree height-diameter data of three major tree species in Western Mediterranean Region’s forests of Turkey. The generalized regression neural network (GRNN) technique has been applied for tree height prediction, as well, due to its ability to fit complex nonlinear models. The performance of the models was compared and evaluated. Further, equivalence tests of the selected models were conducted. Validation showed the appropriatness of all models to predict tree height. According to the model performance criteria, the six nonlinear growth functions were able to capture the height-diameter relationships and fitted the data almost equally well, while the constructed generalized regression neural network (GRNN) models were found to be superior to all nonlinear regression models, in terms of their predictive ability.
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