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Keyword: wilderness

Contrasting human influences and macro-environmental factors on fire activity inside and outside protected areas of North America

Publications Posted on: August 06, 2019
Human activities threaten the effectiveness of protected areas (PAs) in achieving their conservation goals across the globe. In this study, we contrast the influence of human and macro-environmental factors driving fire activity inside and outside PAs.

Climate change likely to reshape vegetation across North America's protected areas

Science Spotlights Posted on: May 23, 2019
National parks, wilderness areas, and nature reserves were created to preserve a sample of pristine ecosystems, but even the most remote protected areas face serious threats from climate change. Managers would benefit from a better understanding how ecosystems within protected areas may respond to global warming.  

Conflicting messages about camping near waterbodies in wilderness: A review of the scientific basis and need for flexibility

Publications Posted on: August 30, 2018
Land managers have commonly sought to discourage or prohibit camping near surface waters (e.g., lakes, rivers, streams, and springs), imposing regulations that prohibit camping within a specified distance from water.

Applying recreation ecology science to sustainably manage camping impacts: A classification of camping management strategies

Publications Posted on: August 30, 2018
Wilderness and other protected natural areas like national forests, parks and refuges are managed to provide high quality recreational opportunities while preserving natural resource conditions.

Guidelines for evaluating air pollution impacts on wilderness within the Rocky Mountain Region: Report of a workshop, 1990

Publications Posted on: August 01, 2018
This document is the product of an ongoing effort begun at a 4-day workshop sponsored by the Rocky Mountain Region of the USDA Forest Service, held in December 1990 in Estes Park, Colorado. Workshop participants gathered in groups to work on pollution impacts in three specific areas: aquatic ecosystems; terrestrial ecosystems; and visibility.

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

Pages Posted on: July 11, 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. Found at, the Toolbox includes a recently created wilderness evaluation framework questionnaire. The wilderness  evaluation framework can help wilderness managers evaluate wilderness restoration needs in light of the management restraint mandated by the Wilderness Act. It also can help facilitate communication and collaboration between State and Federal agencies and wilderness area stakeholders.

Manipulating the wild: A survey of restoration and management interventions in U.S. wilderness

Publications Posted on: July 10, 2018
Landscape scale restoration is a common management intervention used around the world to combat ecological degradation. For wilderness managers in the United States, the decision to intervene is complicated by the Wilderness Act’s legal mandate to preserve wilderness character and demonstrate managerial restraint (16 U.S.C. § 1131-1136).

A mental model of science informed by public lands managers: Increasing the chances for management based on science

Publications Posted on: June 12, 2018
Some federal public lands have been legally protected as “wilderness areas” since 1964 in the US. A federal science program evolved first in response to a novel public lands management concept, and subsequently in response to new issues that emerged both as society changed and more knowledge about social and ecological values of wilderness accumulated.

Measuring managers' perceptions of llama use in wild areas - data from 1993

Datasets Posted on: March 15, 2018
This data publication contains the results of a 1993 survey of Forest Service and Park Service managers across the United States and their perceptions of llama use in wild areas. Over 200 mailback surveys were returned from managers representing more than 150 different wilderness areas and 25 states.

Social conditions and preference data for visitors to three wilderness areas in the southern United States in 1989-1990

Datasets Posted on: March 15, 2018
Visitors to the Cohutta Wilderness in Georgia, Caney Creek Wilderness in Arkansas, and Upland Island Wilderness in Texas were surveyed to gather baseline data on use and user characteristics. Sampling took place between May and November 1989 for both Cohutta and Caney Creek Wilderness areas, and between October 1989 and February 1990 for the Upland Island Wilderness.