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LINKAGES: An Individual-based Forest Ecosystem Biogeochemistry Model

This model product contains the source codes for version 1 of the individual-based forest ecosystem biogeochemistry model LINKAGES and two subsequent versions as well as example input and output data. LINKAGES predicts long-term structure and dynamics of forest ecosystems as constrained by nitrogen availability, climate, and soil moisture. Model simulations compare favorably to field data from different geographic areas worldwide. LINKAGES, written in FORTRAN and provided in ASCII format, simulates birth, growth, and death of all trees greater than 1.43-cm dbh. Litter fall and decomposition are also simulated. Sunlight is the driving variable. Growing season degree days, soil water availability, and AET are calculated from precipitation, temperature, soil field moisture capacity, and wilting point. Decomposition and soil N availability are calculated from organic matter quantity and carbon chemistry, evapotranspiration, and degree of canopy closure. Light availability to each tree is a function of leaf biomass of taller trees. Degree days and availabilities of light and water constrain species reproduction. These variables plus soil N constrain tree growth and carbon accumulation in biomass. Tree death probability increases with age and slow growth. Leaf, root, and woody litter are returned to the soil at the end of each year to decay the following year. Climatic and forest data for eastern North America and New South Wales are provided as example model inputs. Modelers may use their own site data within any version of LINKAGES. Example model output is also provided.

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