Intraseasonal interactive effects of successive typhoons characterize canopy damage of forests in Taiwan: A remote sensing-based assessment

Jonathan Peereman, J. Aaron Hogan, Teng Chiu Lin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Wind gusts and rainfall from tropical cyclones can heavily damage forest canopies, leading to abrupt changes in forest structure and tree demography. Although many studies have shown that successive tropical cyclones can interact with each other through residual effects, the role of past disturbances is unclear because they may lead to damage amplification of the second cyclone because of weakened forest structure, or damage reduction of the second cyclone because of previous damage to susceptible trees. We investigated the interaction between consecutive cyclones between 2001 and 2017 for five well-conserved forests in Taiwan, which experiences an average of 1.75 typhoons annually. Using MODIS imagery, we computed the typhoon-induced change of a canopy vegetation index, the Normalized Difference Infrared Index (NDII). The effects of successive typhoons were assessed separately for typhoons occurring within a single year (annual analysis) and within two consecutive years (biennial analysis). We used mixed effect models of reductions in NDII, a measurement of canopy damage, in relation to target and past typhoon characteristics and damage magnitude. NDII reduction induced by preceding typhoons was slightly more important and statistically significant in explaining the variation in NDII reduction associated with the target typhoon in the annual than in the biennial analysis, where the effect was non-significant. Canopy damage did not always decrease across typhoons occurring within the same season, however, for most successive typhoons in the biennial analysis, the second cyclone caused equal or less canopy damage (16 out of 21 typhoon pairs). These results support the idea that residual interactive effects of previous typhoons decrease quickly over time and rarely last for several typhoon seasons for Taiwanese forests, contributing to their high resistance to frequent typhoon disturbance.

Original languageEnglish
Article number120430
JournalForest Ecology and Management
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Oct 1


  • Canopy disturbance
  • Residual effects
  • Subtropical forests
  • Successive tropical cyclones
  • Taiwan
  • Vegetation index

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Forestry
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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