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Geography: Oregon

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. 

High soil temperature data archive

Projects Posted on: June 07, 2018
High Soil Temperature Data Archive - From Prescribed Fires and Wildfires across the Western US.

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.

Whitebark pine distribution and regeneration

Media Gallery Posted on: June 04, 2018
Whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis) is an ecologically important species in high-altitude areas of the West due to the habitat and food source it provides for Clark’s nutcrackers, red squirrels, grizzly bears, and other animals. Whitebark pine stands have recently experienced high mortality due to wildfire, white pine blister rust, and a mountain pine beetle outbreak, leading to questions about the species’ long-term viability. This project seeks to quantify the current distribution and regeneration status of whitebark pine throughout its US range.

Whitebark pine distribution and regeneration in mixed-species stands

Projects Posted on: June 01, 2018
Whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis) is an ecologically important species in high-altitude areas of the West due to the habitat and food source it provides for Clark’s nutcrackers, red squirrels, grizzly bears, and other animals. Whitebark pine stands have recently experienced high mortality due to wildfire, white pine blister rust, and a mountain pine beetle outbreak, leading to questions about the species’ long-term viability. This project seeks to quantify the current distribution and regeneration status of whitebark pine throughout its US range.

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

Fire patterns in piñon and juniper in the Western United States: Trends from 1984 through 2013

Science Spotlights Posted on: May 15, 2018
Changes in fire patterns for piñon and juniper vegetation in the western United States were analyzed over a 30-year period. This is the first evaluation of its type.

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.

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.

Climate change, crowd-sourcing, and conserving aquatic biotas in the Rocky Mountains this century

Pages Posted on: April 12, 2018
Climate change is causing rapid changes to stream habitats across the Rocky Mountains and Pacific Northwest as warmer air temperatures and changes in precipitation increase stream temperatures, alter stream hydrology, and increase the extent and magnitude of natural disturbances related to droughts and wildfires. These changes are affecting trout, salmon, and other fish populations, many of which are already subject to substantial non-climate stressors. Fish habitats at lower elevations - near the downstream edges of species distributions - are particularly vulnerable. However, three Rocky Mountain Research scientists are conducting research and developing applied management tools that harness the power of crowd-sourcing to generate information and create opportunities for collaboration and resource allocation decisions that may help to conserve some of the aquatic biotas currently at risk. This is enabling adaptation to move forward at a scale and pace more appropriate to the challenges posed by climate change.

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