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    Cao's compatible, segmented polynomial taper equation (Q. V. Cao, H. E. Burkhart, and T. A. Max. For. Sci. 26: 71-80. 1980) is fitted to a large loblolly pine data set from the southeastern United States. Equations are presented that predict diameter at a given height, height to a given top diameter, and volume below a given position on the main stem. All estimates are inside bark. A condition is given that forces the Cao model to be exactly compatible with any total main stem volume equation. An exact volume estimation formula is derived. Twelve benchmarks, which represent realistic utilization criteria, are used to describe expected errors in actually applying the taper equation rather than the more common fit statistics that describe errors encountered when estimating model parameters. Errors in using the fitted model are very similar to errors using Cao's estimates.

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    McClure, J. P.; Czaplewski, R. L. 1986. Compatible taper equation for loblolly pine. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 16(6): 1272-1277.


    taper equation, loblolly pine, Cao model

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