Landing size and landing layout in whole-tree harvesting operations in New Zealand
Landings are an integral part of modern whole-tree harvesting operations in New Zealand. A representative sample of 142 landings were measured using GPS; twelve recently constructed and unused, 38 live and the remaining 92 were older and closed out. The average landing size was 3900 m2, with a range from 1370 to 12540m2. On average the number of log-sorts cut was 11, the landings in use for 4 weeks, estimated daily production was 287 m3/day, 47% were manual processing (53% mechanised), and 79% were grapple loader (21% front-end loader). A regression equation to model landing size indicates that number of log sorts and production levels are the two main factors that determine landing size. Landings do tend to ‘grow’ over time, with used landings on average being 900m2 larger than recently constructed (unused) landings. Most recently constructed landings were much larger than the company design; whereby either 40x60m or 40x80m were common specifications. A comparable study in 1987 showed the average landing to be just over 1900 m2, indicating landing size has nearly doubled in the last 20 years. Landings serviced by front-end loaders were on average 1100m2 larger than those serviced by grapple loader, but this is compounded by front-end loaders being more commonly used in high production systems.