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Geography: National

A world in pixels: High-severity fire and new research

Documents and Media Posted on: August 14, 2018
A new paper by Sean Parks, a research ecologist with the Rocky Mountain Research Station and the Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute, and collaborators describes new maps that can help identify areas where high-severity fire is most likely to occur. Document Type: Other Documents

Avian research and monitoring at Rocky Mountain Research Station: Science nested in land management

Pages Posted on: July 31, 2018
Birds play many roles in ecosystems, such as seed dispersal or foraging on herbivorous insects. In order to understand their unique roles, as well as to understand how birds can provide advanced warning for various environmental scenarios, researchers at the Rocky Mountain Research Station have been conducting avian research over the past few decades. These studies have enhanced ecosystem knowledge, assisting land managers with land management plans, bird conservation plans and providing support for legal findings.

Development of the Rangeland Production Monitoring Service could improve rangeland management

Projects Posted on: July 24, 2018
Rangeland managers and livestock producers need timely and consistent tools that can inform grazing strategies, risk management, and allotment management plans. On the ground monitoring is expensive and resources can be limited, making it difficult to do consistently. The new Rangeland Production Monitoring Service can help make monitoring processes more effective and easier to implement.

Carbon Monitoring System (CMS)

Projects Posted on: June 22, 2018
A historically consistent and broadly applicable monitoring, reporting, and verification system based on lidar sampling and Landsat time-series (tested in the US, and applied to the US NGHGI reporting system).

Landscape Change Monitoring System (LCMS)

Projects Posted on: June 22, 2018
The Landscape Change Monitoring System (LCMS) is an emerging remote sensing-based system for mapping and monitoring land cover and land use change across the US. Envisioned as a framework for integrating Landsat-based products and other datasets, LCMS  is producing spatially, temporally, and thematically comprehensive data and information from which landscape change can be consistently assessed, documented, and analyzed at the national scale. 

The eDNAtlas project: A national map of aquatic biodiversity

Science Spotlights Posted on: June 07, 2018
The National Genomics Center for Wildlife and Fish Conservation pioneered development of eDNA sampling of aquatic environments at their laboratory in Missoula, MT. The Center has partnered with dozens of National Forests, as well as other state, federal, tribal, and private natural resource organizations to assist in the collection and processing of eDNA samples. Thousands of eDNA samples are collected annually and constitute a rapidly growing biodiversity archive that provides precise information about native and non-native species distributions, temporal trends in those distributions, and the efficacy of species and habitat restoration and conservation efforts. eDNA sampling provides a low-cost & sensitive method for determining which species occur in water bodies. Rapid adoption of eDNA sampling by many natural resource agencies led to an exponential increase in data and the need for an open-access database. The website and open-access database were launched in June 2018 with approximately 6,000 samples and is updated semi-annually with newly processed samples.

Recreating in color: Promoting racial and ethnic diversity in public land use

Science Spotlights Posted on: May 31, 2018
Historically, racial and ethnic minorities in the United States are not as likely to recreate or work in the country’s natural lands as are racial whites. Data from the Forest Service’s National Visitor Use Monitoring program indicate disproportionate utilization of National Forest System recreation opportunities by the nation’s minority racial and ethnic groups. Past individual case studies conducted of regional areas have addressed constraints to outdoor recreation for racial and ethnic minority groups. This is the first study to examine equity of service across the entire National Forest System. 

Recreating in color: Promoting ethnic diversity on public lands

Documents and Media Posted on: May 30, 2018
Recent studies of the Forest Service’s National Visitor Use Monitoring (NVUM) data show a wide disparity in racial and ethnic use of national forests. Researchers at the Rocky Mountain Research Station in Fort Collins, Colorado, are studying NVUM numbers systematically and hope that their research will help National Forest System staff to encourage different racial and ethnic groups to connect with public natural lands. Document Type: Other Documents

Keep it wild: Asking the right questions to guide wilderness management

Science Spotlights Posted on: May 15, 2018
Altered disturbance regimes and changing ecosystem dynamics in wilderness areas have increased the importance of having an evaluation framework to support transparent decision-making for ecological restoration actions. A recently created wilderness evaluation framework questionnaire allows for improved communication between land management agencies and wilderness stakeholders.