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Keyword: fire severity

Wildfires in southern Arizona high-elevation forests: More severe but not larger

Science Spotlights Posted on: April 15, 2015
The Pinaleno Demography project was established by the USDA Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station and the University of Arizona to determine how forest vegetation, wildfire, insect outbreaks, humans, and climate interact. By using tree-ring analysis, researchers can provide a historical context for modern wildfire events.

Understory vegetation following the 2002 Hayman Fire in Colorado (2003-2015)

Projects Posted on: April 14, 2015
Many of today’s fires in ponderosa pine dominated forests are burning more severely than historical ones, generating concern that understory plant communities will not recover without intervention.  There are also concerns that fires will facilitate the establishment and spread of non-native species.  In 2002, Colorado’s Hayman Fire burned pre-existing understory vegetation plots and provided an opportunity to address these concerns. 

Quantitative approaches for evaluating fire effects on wildlife communities in National Forest Systems

Projects Posted on: April 14, 2015
Innovative quantitative approaches have been developed for evaluating wildfire and prescribed fire effects on wildlife communities in several western North American national forests.

Composite Burn Index (CBI) data and field photos collected for the FIRESEV project, western United States

Datasets Posted on: March 27, 2015
This set of Composite Burn Index (CBI) data was collected from 2009 to 2011 and supports several products created during the FIRESEV project, which was funded by the Joint Fire Sciences Program. FIRESEV (FIRE SEVerity mapping tools) is a comprehensive set of tools and protocols to deliver, create, and evaluate fire severity maps for all phases of fire management. This CBI data describes fire effects for the western U.S.

Science You Can Use Bulletin: Seeing red: New tools for mapping and understanding fire severity

Publications Posted on: March 04, 2015
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.

Ten years of vegetation assembly after a North American mega-fire

Publications Posted on: October 03, 2014
Altered fuels and climate change are transforming fire regimes in many of Earth's biomes. Postfire reassembly of vegetation - paramount to C storage and biodiversity conservation frequently remains unpredictable and complicated by rapid global change.

Understorey plant community dynamics following a large, mixed severity wildfire in a Pinus ponderosa-Pseudotsuga menziesii forest, Colorado, USA

Publications Posted on: September 26, 2014
In 2002, the Hayman Fire burned across 55 800 ha of Colorado Front Range P. ponderosa-P. menziesii forest. Also burned in the fire were 20 upland and five riparian plots within a 400-ha study area. These plots had been surveyed for understorey plant composition and cover 5-6 yrs prior. We re-measured all plots annually from 2003 to 2007, 1-5 yrs post-fire.

The relationship of post-fire white ash cover to surface fuel consumption

Publications Posted on: September 25, 2013
White ash results from the complete combustion of surface fuels, making it a logically simple retrospective indicator of surface fuel consumption. However, the strength of this relationship has been neither tested nor adequately demonstrated with field measurements.

Pre-fire treatments have persistent effects on post-fire plant communities

Publications Posted on: September 19, 2013
Wildfires characterized by large areas of high severity are increasingly occurring in ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa P. & C. Lawson) forests of the Southwest to extents that are out of the natural range of variability. Managers are now routinely applying thinning and/or burning treatments to reduce fire severity.