• carbon balance;
  • fagus sylvatica L.;
  • eddy covariance;
  • primary production


The seasonal carbon dioxide exchange of a beech forest of Central Italy was studied by means of the eddy covariance technique. Additional measurements of biomass respiration with cuvettes and relationship of carbon dioxide exchanges with temperature and light were used to interpolate missing data during the dormant and part of the growing season.

The net ecosystem production of the forest equals 472 g C m−2 y−1 while the gross ecosystem production 1016 g C m−2 y−1 and respiration 544 g C m−2 y−1. These estimates are compared with the net primary production determined by direct biomass sampling which amounts to 802 g C m−2 y−1.