Skip to Main Content
History of fire in a southern Ohio second-growth mixed-oak forestAuthor(s): Elaine Kennedy Sutherland
Source: In: Pallardy, Stephen G.; Cecich, Robert A.; Garrett, H. Gene; Johnson, Paul S., eds. Proceedings of the 11th Central Hardwood Forest Conference; Gen. Tech. Rep. NC-188. St. Paul, MN: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, North Central Forest Experiment Station: 172-183
Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)
Station: North Central Research Station
PDF: View PDF (2.26 MB)
DescriptionThe role of fire in shaping the composition and structure of Quercus (oak)-dominated communities in the deciduous forests of eastern North America is becoming clearer but fire regimes are less well known. I analyzed the fire-scar patterns in 14 oak cross sections from a mixed-oak stand in Vinton County, southeastern Ohio, to determine the frequency and seasonality of fire. This oak stand was even-aged and originated in the mid-1850s, so the fire history is representative of the period after Euro-American settlement. The tree rings were crossdated, calendar year of the fire sears was assigned, and season of burning noted. The fire-scar dates are Weibull-distributed, and the median probability interval is 3.6 years. The 95% and 5% Weibull probability exceedance intervals were 0.4 and 12.1. Spatially extensive (major) fires occurred every 7.5 years, and the 95% and 5% exceedance intervals for these fires were 0.9 and 24.3. The fires probably were ignited by people. Fire scars indicated that most fires (69%) occurred during the dormant season or in the spring (25%) and were rare (6%) during the summer (May 1 to July 30). These patterns are not significantly different from dates of observed wildfires in Vinton County. Seasonal climate has no apparent relationship to fire occurrence.
- Check the Northern Research Station web site to request a printed copy of this publication.
- Our on-line publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat.
- During the capture process some typographical errors may occur.
- Please contact Sharon Hobrla, firstname.lastname@example.org if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationSutherland, Elaine Kennedy. 1997. History of fire in a southern Ohio second-growth mixed-oak forest. In: Pallardy, Stephen G.; Cecich, Robert A.; Garrett, H. Gene; Johnson, Paul S., eds. Proceedings of the 11th Central Hardwood Forest Conference; Gen. Tech. Rep. NC-188. St. Paul, MN: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, North Central Forest Experiment Station: 172-183
- Development of prescribed fire as a silvicultural tool for the upland oak forests of the eastern United States
- The fireoak literature of eastern North America: synthesis and guidelines
- A review of fire and oak regeneration and overstory recruitment
XML: View XML