Skip to Main Content
Protection from erosion following wildfireAuthor(s): Peter R. Robichaud; William J. Elliot
Source: Unpublished paper written for presentation at the 2006 ASABE Annual International Meeting, Portland Convention Center, Portland, OR, July 9-12, 2006. ASABE Paper No. 068009. St. Joseph, MI: American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers. 7 p
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
PDF: View PDF (755 KB)
DescriptionErosion in the first year after a wildfire can be up to three orders of magnitude greater than the erosion from undisturbed forests. To mitigate potential postfire erosion, various erosion control treatments are applied on highly erodible areas with downstream resources in need of protection. Because postfire erosion rates generally decline by an order of magnitude for each year of recovery, effective erosion mitigation treatments are most needed during the first year or two after a fire. Postfire treatments include broadcast seeding, scarification and trenching, physical erosion barriers such as contour-felled logs and straw wattles, and mulching with wheat straw, wood straw, and hydromulch. This paper summarizes data from more than seven years of studies to evaluate the effectiveness of postfire erosion mitigation treatments at the hillslope and small watershed-scale in the western U.S. Results suggest that some mitigation treatments may help reduce erosion for some, but not all, rainfall events. Generally, mulching is more effective than seeding, scarifying, or erosion barriers. For small rainfall events, reduction in first year erosion rates have been measured for engineered wood straw and straw mulch (60 to 80%), contour-felled log erosion barriers (50 to 70%), and hydromulch (19%). Grass seeding treatments have little effect on first year erosion reduction. For intense rain events (I10 greater than 40 mm h-1) there was little difference between treated and non-treated areas.
- You may send email to email@example.com to request a hard copy of this publication.
- (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
- 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.
CitationRobichaud, Peter R.; Elliot, William J. 2006. Protection from erosion following wildfire. Unpublished paper written for presentation at the 2006 ASABE Annual International Meeting, Portland Convention Center, Portland, OR, July 9-12, 2006. ASABE Paper No. 068009. St. Joseph, MI: American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers. 7 p
Keywordserosion mitigation, sediment yield, forest fire
- A wood-strand material for wind erosion control: effects on total sediment loss, PM10 vertical flux, and PM10 loss
- Effects of postfire seeding and fertilizing on hillslope erosion in north-central Washington, USA
- Techniques for establishing vegetation for long-term erosion control on disturbed slopes in Alabama
XML: View XML