Landcover Class Information
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Betula papyrifera, Populus tremuloides and Populus balsamifera, individually or combined, with a canopy cover of 10% to 100%, with needleleaf less than 25% of the total tree cover. The class is comparable to the Viereck et al. (1992) hierarchical levels closed broadleaf forest (IB1), open broadleaf forest (IB2), and broadleaf woodland (IB3).
This class occurs at low elevations (93 to 774 meters based on field data; Table 3) primarily in the Lake Minchumina Basin, toeslopes of the Kantishna Hills, lower slope positions and rolling hills on the south side of the Alaska Range, and in localized patches on outwash plains and floodplains throughout Denali National Park and Preserve. The slope ranges from relatively level on floodplains, to moderate to steep on hillsides. The class is concentrated in the Kuskokwim-low mountains and pediments ecoregion and the Alaska Range-Kantishna Hills ecoregion (Tables 4a and 4b; Clark 1998). This class does not, however, dominate any one ecoregion. These deciduous forests cover 1.6% (97,063 acres) of Denali National Park and Preserve (Table 5).
Forest canopy closure for the broadleaf class ranges from 10% to 100%, with an average cover of 75%. Betula papyrifera is the most common species dominating sites on both the north and south sides of the Alaska Range. Populus tremuloides often occurs as a sub-dominant to Betula papyrifera, but also occurs as the dominant deciduous tree species in the northeast portion of the park. Populus balsamifera is typically restricted to floodplains occurring as small to mid size patches, but is also found in small patches on hillsides throughout the park. From an aerial perspective, understory shrubs are typically Alnus and Salix species. Small coverage of grasses and sedges also occur. Mosses and lichens are present in varying amounts. Adjacent landcover classes include open-woodland spruce and, occasionally, dense-open spruce. Small patches of dry-mesic herbaceous or wet herbaceous often grow adjacent to this type on riparian areas.
The producer’s accuracy for the broadleaf class is 80.3%, with a user’s accuracy of 62.1%. Most of the errors of commission are with the spruce-broadleaf class, while most of the omission errors are with the willow and low shrub birch-ericaceous-willow map class.Plant associations occurring within the Broadleaf Forest landcover class:
- Betula papyrifera, Alnus crispa, Rosa acicularis, Vaccinium vitis-idaea, Hylocomnium splendens
- Populus balsamifera, Alnus crispa, Dryas drummondii, Shepherdia canadensis, Agropyron violaceum
- Populus balsamifera, Larix laricina, Picea glauca, Salix alaxensis, Hedysarum alpinum, Epilobium angustifolium
- Populus balsamifera, Picea glauca, Alnus crispa, Rosa acicularis, Calamagrostis lapponica, Equisetum silvaticum, Polytrichium species
- Populus balsamifera, Picea glauca, Alnus crispa, Salix alaxensis, Calamagrostis inexpansa, Tometnhypnum nitens
- Populus balsamifera, Picea glauca, Salix alaxensis, Alnus crispa, Salix planifolia, Empetrum nigrum, Epilobium angustifolium, Hylocomium splendens
- Populus balsamifera, Salix alaxensis, Salix glauca, Shepherdia canadensis, Senecio lugens
- Populus balsamifera, Salix alaxensis, Salix planifolia, Shepherdia canadensis, Arctostaphylos rubra, Senecio lugens, Hylocomium splendens