1. General Model Information
Name: Vegetation Dynamics Development Tool
Main medium: terrestrial
Main subject: forestry, population dynamics, agriculture
Organization level: Landscape, Ecosystem
Type of model: Markov process, Markov chain, rule based
Main application: decision support/expert system, education
Keywords: non-spatial, succession, disturbance, fire,vegetation
ESSA Technologies Ltd.,
Suite 300, 1765 W. 8th Avenue, Vancouver, BC, Canada. V6J 5C6
Phone: 604 733 2996
Fax: 604 733 4657
S.J. Beukema, W.A. Kurz and others
(from web-site introduction)
The Vegetation Dynamics Development Tool (VDDT) is a user-friendly, Windows-based computer tool which provides a modeling framework for examining the role of various disturbance agents and management actions in vegetation change. It allows users to create and test descriptions of vegetation dynamics, simulating them at the landscape level.
Projecting changes in vegetation structure and composition over time is an important part of landscape-level analyses. Vegetation may change for a variety of reasons, such as human activity, fires, insects, pathogens, mammals, weather, or growth and competition. The interaction of these factors is complex and the combined effects are difficult to predict over long periods.
Probably the most important contribution of VDDT is that it provides a common platform for specialists from different disciplines — e.g., entomology, pathology, fire ecology, silviculture, wildlife biology and ecology — to collectively define the roles of various processes and agents of disturbance on landscape-level vegetation dynamics. Moreover, the development tool allows for rapid gaming and testing of the sensitivity of the ecosystem to alternative assumptions. It thus provides a tool for learning and communication.
II. Technical Information
Operating System(s): MS Windows 98 and later
Programming Language(s): VB
Vegetation Dynamics Development Tool, User's Guide, Version 4.4c
examples and tutorials in User's Guide and upon installation
see: VDDT Reports and Publications
see: What does a user need to define?
III. Mathematical Information
see: Reports and Publications
user-defined vegetation classes
see: Highlights (short introduction how to use it)
see: screenshots of results
Merzenich, J., W.A. Kurz, S. Beukema, M. Arbaugh and S. Schilling. 2003. Determining forest fuel treatments for the Bitterroot front using VDDT. In: G.J. Arthaud and T.M. Barrett (eds.). Systems Analysis in Forest Resources. Kluwer Academic Publishers. pp. 47-59.
Beukema, S.J., W.A. Kurz, C.B. Pinkham, K. Milosheva and L. Frid. 2003. Vegetation Dynamics Development Tool, User's Guide, Version 4.4c. Prepared by ESSA Technologies Ltd., Vancouver, BC, 239 pp.
Barrett, T.M. 2001. Models of vegetation change for landscape planning: a comparison of FETM, LANDSUM, SIMPPLLE, and VDDT. Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-76-WWW. Ogden, UT: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. 14 p.
Beukema, S.J. and C.B. Pinkham. 2001. Vegetation pathway diagrams for the Morice and Lakes Innovative Forest Practices Agreement. Report IFPA No 451.01. 76 pp.
Hann, W.J. and D.L. Bunnell. 2001. Fire and land management planning and implementation across multiple scales. International Journal of Wildland Fire 10:389-403.
Hemstrom, M.A., J.J. Korol and W.J. Hann. 2001. Trends in terrestrial plant communities and landscape health indicate the effects of alternative management strategies in the interior Columbia River basin. Forest Ecology and Management 153:105-125.
Arbaugh, M.J., S. Schilling, J. Merzenich and J.W. van Wagtendon. 2000. A test of the strategic fuels management model VDDT using historical data from Yosemite National Park. In: L.F. Neuenschwander and K.C. Ryan (tech. eds.). Proc. Joint Fire Sci. Conf. and Workshop, Vol II. Univ Idaho and Int. Assoc. Wildland Fire. pp. 85-89.
Weise, D.R., R. Kimberlin, M. Arbaugh, J. Chew, G. Jones, J. Merzenich, J.W. van Wagtendonk and M. Wiitala. 2000. A risk-based comparison of potential fuel treatment trade-off models. In: L.F. Neuenschwander and K.C. Ryan (tech. eds.). Proc. Joint Fire Sci. Conf. and Workshop, Vol II. Univ. Idaho and Int. Assoc. Wildland Fire. pp. 96-102.
Merzenich, J., W.A. Kurz, S.J. Beukema, M. Arbaugh and S. Schilling. 1999. Long-range modelling of stochastic disturbances and management treatments using VDDT and TELSA. Proceedings: Society of American Foresters National Convention: Landscape Analysis Session. Portland, Oregon. Sept. 14, 1999.
V. Further information in the World-Wide-Web
VI. Additional remarks
Continually updated, e-mail notification service available
Last review of this document by: : Thu Nov 20 21:16:07 2003
Status of the document: Contributed by Donald Robinson
last modified by
Joachim Benz Mon Nov 24 09:50:53 CET 2003