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The aim of this paper was to evaluate different criteria for stem measurement sampling and to identify the criterion with best performance for developing individual tree volume equations. Data were collected in eucalyptus stands 58 to 65 months old. Schumacher-Hall model was applied using five sampling criteria with nine variations (45 in total): 1) number of trees per diameter class, being (a) fixed number, (b) proportional to the diameter class of the sample, or (c) proportional to the standard deviation of the sample; and 2) the width of the diameter class, which ranged from 1.0 up to 5.0 cm. We used the equations generated from each of the five sampling criteria to estimate stem volume of trees reserved for validation. This allowed us to obtain standard errors of estimates from this data-set. In addition, residuals of volume estimates were examined by means of statistical tests of bias, autocorrelation and heteroscedasticity. Better performances of volume equations occurred when smaller diameter class widths were used, i.e., when the sample size increased. There was no clear trend in increasing/decreasing residual autocorrelation and/or heteroscedasticity. Both methods of sampling proportional to the frequency of diameter class had the best performances, inclusive using only 36 trees. The ones where choice of trees was proportional to the standard deviation had the worst. In conclusion, the selection proportional to the frequency of the diameter class, under the condition that at least two trees per class are sampled, provides models statistically better than all the other criteria.
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