Soil quality is both a driver and indicator of forest ecosystem health. Management-induced changes to soil chemical, physical, and biological properties have the potential to impact soil processes and impair long-term productivity.
This awareness that forest management can impair productivity led to the development of soil monitoring guidelines and soil quality standards. Monitoring soil to determine the impacts of various logging methods is one key to ensuring maintenance of productivity. In particular, salvage logging after the southern pine beetle was assessed to determine the degree of soil disturbance and establish a baseline for expected impacts from this type of management activity.