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Geography: National

Seeing red: New tools for mapping and understanding fire severity

Pages Posted on: May 14, 2018
Large, severe fires are ecologically and socially important because they have lasting effects on vegetation and soils, can potentially threaten people and property, and can be costly to manage. The goals of the Fire Severity Mapping Project(FIRESEV), which covers lands in the continental western United States, are to understand where and why fires burn severely, and to give fire managers, fire ecologists, and natural resource managers tools to assess severity before, during, and after a wildfire. FIRESEV has produced a suite of tools for a wide range of fire management applications, including real-time forecasts and assessments in wildfire situations, post-wildfire rehabilitation efforts, and long-term planning.

Sustaining the Greater sage-grouse may come down to maintaining genetic connectivity

FS News Posted on: May 10, 2018
The Greater sage-grouse, once estimated to have a population of 16 million across the western United States, is now believed to be less than one million. The population decline is related to their habitat, much of which has been degraded by non-native grasses and fragmented by development. Because of the location-specific nature of their mating ritual, greater sage-grouse are particularly vulnerable to habitat disruption. New research builds the case for optimism for this species of concern. A new USDA Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station study, The genetic network of greater sage-grouse: range-wide identification of keystone hubs of connectivity, provides tools for decisionmakers to inform which areas of habitat are most critical to conserve, not just for the bird, but for other species as well.

Keeping it Wild: Guiding wilderness intervention using a new framework

Documents and Media Posted on: April 30, 2018
To help wilderness managers ask the right questions, ecologists at the Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute in Missoula have helped to develop a set of wilderness management resources called the Ecological Intervention and Site Restoration Toolbox. Document Type: Other Documents

Getting to the root of the long-term effects of nursery culture on outplanted seedlings

Projects Posted on: April 19, 2018
Successful ecosystem restoration often relies on outplanting seedlings grown in nurseries. These seedlings must be of high quality; a healthy, vigorous root system is essential. This project examines how root modification achieved in nurseries affects long-term root architecture and current fine-root growth of ponderosa pine.

Revisiting disturbance: A new guide for keeping dry mixed conifer forests healthy through fuel management

Pages Posted on: April 17, 2018
Planning for hazardous fuels reduction can be challenging, given that land managers must balance multiple resource objectives. To help managers with planning and implementing fuel treatments, the Rocky Mountain Research Station, with support from the Joint Fire Science Program, published A Comprehensive Guide to Fuel Management Practices for Dry Mixed Conifer Forests in the Northwestern United States (RMRS-GTR-292). Developed in close consultation with managers, the guide contains a synthesis of the best information on the management community's most frequently asked questions about how to: balance multiple resource objectives, understand and choose among the broad range of available treatment options (including considerations for prescribed burn plans and flow charts to guide the choice of equipment for mechanical treatment), develop an efficient and effective monitoring plan, and understand the trade-offs among longevity, effectiveness, and cost of various treatment options.

Wildfire effects in grand fir-hemlock forests

Projects Posted on: April 12, 2018
Grand fir and western hemlock mortality and regeneration dynamics after wildfire and salvage.

White Bark Pine Climate Change (WBPCC)

Projects Posted on: April 12, 2018
Evaluating effects of climate change on whitebark pine trees.

Photoload: A new fuel sampling method

Projects Posted on: April 12, 2018
A new fuel loading sampling method is developed to quickly and accurately estimate loadings for six surface fuel components using downward-looking and oblique photographs depicting sequences of graduated fuel loadings by fuel component.

Ponderosa pine restoration at Lick Creek

Projects Posted on: April 10, 2018
Lick Creek Demonstration-Research Forest: 25-year fire and cutting effects on vegetation and fuels.

Sam Cushman receives 2018 Distinguished Landscape Practitioner Award

FS News Posted on: April 10, 2018
Sam Cushman is honored with the 2018 Distinguished Landscape Practitioner Award by the United States Chapter of the International Association for Landscape Ecology (US-IALE). This honor is bestowed to individuals who have made outstanding contributions over a period of years to the application of the principles of landscape ecology to real-world problems.