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New Zealand Journal of Forestry (2019) 64(2): 32–36
©New Zealand Institute of Forestry

Professional Paper
Mean top height - a loose concept in New Zealand

Euan Mason *,1

1 Professor, School of Forestry, University of Canterbury, Christchurch. Email:
*Corresponding author.

Abstract: New Zealand has two definitions of mean top height (MTH). While these are equivalent in plots where all heights are measured, they were found to produce different MTH estimates if unmeasured heights were estimated by height versus diameter (H-D) curves, and differences were greater when H-D curves were fitted at a stand-level rather than at a plot-level. In addition, use of stand-level H-D curves to estimate unmeasured heights of trees resulted in large underestimates of between plot MTH variance, thereby underestimating likely errors of stand-level estimates of MTH.
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