Windthrow and Synoptic Climatology

Bill MacDonald bill.macdonald at
Wed Jun 10 17:25:27 EST 1998

Larry Stamm wrote in message <357cc702.5645905 at>...
>On Fri, 5 Jun 1998 04:56:28 -0700, Brendan Murphy <murphyb at> wrote:
>>I am interested in learning of any windthrow studies which have examined
>>the synoptic climatology of severe winds.

In the UK we experience the occasional severe storm which causes
catastrophic windthrow but I am not aware of any predictive studies into

More of a problem for us is what we call endemic windthrow which occurs as
trees reach a certain height and gradually creeps through the forest until
eventually a large proportion of the trees are blown (50 to 100%).  Most of
our forests are planted and this problem is partly related to that.

UK Forestry Commission has developed a predictive model based on four
factors namely; Altitude, Soil Type, General Windiness (related to location
within UK), and topex (a measure of the degree of topographic shelter.

More information is available from


Bill MacDonald

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