Climate gradients and modelling of the forest altitudinal zones in the Czech Republic

Karel Matějka

The aim of this paper is the construction of a new general-purpose mathematical model for the borderlines between forest vegetation zones (FAZ). The presented model is based on the modelling of average air temperatures on the basis of a digital terrain model. Temperature correction due to the slope and exposure of a location is calibrated using an extensive database of phytocoenological relevés. The border temperatures of forest vegetation zones were determined using results of own field research, which took place primarily in Šumava Mts. (Bohemian Forest), but also in the Krkonoše Mts. (Giant Mountains) and the Krušné hory Mts. (Ore Mountains). The temperature corresponding to the alpine tree line (8th/9th FAZ) is equal to 2.5 °C. The relationship of FAZ boundaries of the ongoing present climate change was discussed. Pointed out is the fact that these boundaries are rather stable, but the composition of the ecosystems and the communities within those boundaries may change gradually.

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