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Relationship of post-fire ground cover to surface fuel loads and consumption in longleaf pine ecosystems

Author(s):

Year:

2014

Publication type:

Paper (invited, offered, keynote)

Primary Station(s):

Rocky Mountain Research Station

Source:

In: Wade, Dale D.; Fox, Rebekah L., eds; Robinson, Mikel L., comp. Proceedings of 4th Fire Behavior and Fuels Conference; 18-22 February 2013, Raleigh, NC; and 1-4 July 2013, St. Petersburg, Russia. Missoula, MT: International Association of Wildland Fire. p. 235-240.

Description

The RxCADRE research team collected multi-scale measurements of pre-, during, and post-fire variables on operational prescribed fires conducted in 2008, 2011, and 2012 in longleaf pine ecosystems in the southeastern USA. Pre- and post-fire surface fuel loads were characterized in alternating pre- and post-fire clip plots systematically established within burn units. Pre- and post-fire surface fuel loads summarized at the plot level were aggregated to estimate absolute consumption (tons/acre) and relative consumption (%) in 28 sample units. Percent cover of green vegetation, non-photosynthetic vegetation (NPV), black char, white ash, and mineral soil were ocularly estimated in plots co-located with the post-fire fuel plots and aggregated to the same 28 sample units. Spearman correlations were calculated between the usually non-normal distributions of ground cover fractions (%) and either surface fuel loads or consumption. There were highly significant correlations between many of these variables, with post-fire white ash cover and exposed mineral soil producing the highest correlations with pre- and post-fire surface fuel loads and consumption. This study provides empirical evidence for the assumption that post-fire white ash is the fire effect most indicative of surface fuel consumption.

Citation

Hudak, Andrew T.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Vihnanek, Robert E.; Wright, Clint S. 2014. Relationship of post-fire ground cover to surface fuel loads and consumption in longleaf pine ecosystems. In: Wade, Dale D.; Fox, Rebekah L., eds, Robinson, Mikel L., comp. Proceedings of 4th Fire Behavior and Fuels Conference; 18-22 February 2013, Raleigh, NC; and 1-4 July 2013, St. Petersburg, Russia. Missoula, MT: International Association of Wildland Fire. p. 235-240.

Publication Notes

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https://www.fs.usda.gov/treesearch/pubs/46780