Automatic monitoring systems for forest canopy and topography have been recently established at the two field stations (Ailaoshan Forest Ecosystem Research Station and Xishuangbanna Tropical Rainforest Ecosystem Station) of XTBG. The canopy cranes are installed on the existing flux observation towers.
Though they often appear constant and immutable, canopies are dynamic and change in structure and function at a variety of time scales. The technological application of canopy crane allows researchers to record and interpret larger amounts of meaningful canopy data. The instruments will record automatically a photo of forest canopy every three hours, according to scientists from the two stations.
The field of canopy research is constituted of multiple disciplines such as forest ecology, meteorology, zoology, geography, and conservation biology, etc. Canopy studies yield important insights into issues of global environmental issues such as climate change, maintenance of biodiversity, and the creation of systematic forest management practices.
Some XTBG scientists are engaged in forest canopy studies. Prof. Dr. Cao Min is the first Chinese ecologist who is elected as member of the Steering Committee of Global Canopy Programme.
Physiognomy of Ailaoshan subtropical forest
Physiognomy of Xishuangbanna Tropical Seasonal Rainforest