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    Author(s): Martin Vavra; Michael J. WisdomJohn G. Kie; John G. Cook; Robert A. Riggs
    Date: 2004
    Source: In: Transactions of the 69th North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference: 785-797
    Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
    PDF: Download Publication  (980 KB)


    In the national forests of the Blue Mountains, a high percentage of commercial tree species, such as Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziessi) and true firs (Abies spp.), have died as a result of overcrowding on drier sites, drought and insects (Johnson et al. 1995, Quigley and Arbelbide 1997). These conditions are typical of forested land throughout the West (Covington and Moore 1994, Quigley and Arbelbide 1997). Traditional forest management practices (fire exclusion, harvest practices) (Johnson et al. 1995) and livestock grazing (Belsky and Blumenthal 1997) have contributed substantially to the current situation (Hann et al. 1997). Because of these influences, trees in many stands exist at higher basal areas and higher densities (live and dead) than occurred historically, creating ladder fuels that have dramatically increased the risk of catastrophic wildfires covering very large acreages. In the coming years, it can be expected that fires will continue on forests where excessive fuel build-ups have occurred. And, extensive fuel reduction projects will be initiated to prevent them per the Healthy Forest Restoration Act of 2003.

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    Vavra, Martin; Wisdom, Michael J.; Kie, John G.; Cook, John G.; Riggs, Robert A. 2004. The role of ungulate herbivory and management on ecosystem patterns and processes: future direction of the Starkey project. In: Transactions of the 69th North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference: 785-797

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