Realized Gain Trials / Second Generation Tree Improvement - 130-406

Description: Selection of genetically superior trees in tree improvement programs is based on growing selected trees in progeny tests where the effects of environmental variation are minimized. To the extent that environmental effects are removed, the observed variation in the test is associated with genetic variation. Progeny testing is an effective way of identifying genetically superior trees. The relationship between predicted and actual increases in growth rate are affected by the reintroduction of environmental variation. Realized gain trials are designed to improve our understanding of how environmental conditions modify predicted gains from progeny tests. For the Forestry Research Partnership and Tembec, it is imperative that we know the true gain we are achieving through tree improvement, so that it can be accurately applied within intensive forest management planning exercises.

The Realized Gain Trials Project initiated the process of developing an integrated suite of test plantings, allowing the evaluation of area based gains resulting from the use of genetically improved reforestation stock. The data collected from progeny tests, which are designed and intensively managed to exclude environmental effects, provided genetic gain estimates that were based on individual trees. However, the real gains from utilizing improved stock resulted from measured unit area increases in volume (i.e. m3/ha.). The adjustment of growth and yield models, which can translate into allowable cut increases, requires trials like these. They must be specifically designed to evaluate gain on an area basis.
The realized gain trials were completed in 2002, but are being maintained through this project (130-406) as part of the Forestry Research Partnership’s, Tembec’s and Forest Genetics Ontario’s commitment to a tree improvement program in black spruce, which is showing great promise.
growth and yield modeling.

The objective of the Realized Gain Trials Project is to develop a methodology to measure and clearly illustrate the genetic effects of tree improvement on growth and yield using black spruce selections. The goal of the project is to allow for the incorporation of genetic gains into growth and yield modeling.


The Project Team: Randy Ford, NESMA, Dennis Joyce, OMNR, Vic Wearn, Algo-Temp Forest Services


Tree Tips:

Tree Tip for Project 130-406, March 2009


Status Reports:

Status Report (2007-2008)

Project Work Report (2007-2008)

NeSMA Annual Report 2007/2008


For Additional Information Contact:

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