Skip to Main Content
Scale Dependence of Oak Woodland Historical Fire Intervals: Contrasting the Barrens of Tennessee and Cross Timbers of Oklahoma, USAAuthor(s): Michael C. Stambaugh; Richard P. Guyette; Joseph M. Marschall; Daniel C. Dey
Source: Fire Ecology. 12(2): 65-84.
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Station: Northern Research Station
View PDF (5.0 MB)
DescriptionCharacterization of scale dependence of fire intervals could inform interpretations of fire history and improve fire prescriptions that aim to mimic historical fire regime conditions. We quantified the temporal variability in fire regimes and described the spatial dependence of fire intervals through the analysis of multi-century fire scar records (8 study sites, 332 trees, 843 fire scars) derived from two historically post oak (Quercus stellata Wangenh.) woodland landscapes. Despite large differences in fire environment conditions, study sites (~1 km2) burned frequently (mean fire interval [MFI] ≤10 yr) before Euro-American settlement (pre-EAS), with sites in Tennessee showing higher overall fire frequency than sites in Oklahoma, USA. Pre- EAS MFIs decreased exponentially with increasing spatial extent from individual trees (~1 m2) to landscapes (~100 km2). The relationship between MFI and spatial extent may help to explain how historical observations of annual burning could be recorded in woodlands, when experimental studies suggest that this is too frequent for tree recruitment. Further investigations of spatial dependence of fire intervals would improve our ability to relate historical and experimental fire data to present day fire prescriptions, and vice versa.
- 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, email@example.com 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.
CitationStambaugh, Michael C.; Guyette, Richard P.; Marschall, Joseph M.; Dey, Daniel C. 2016. Scale Dependence of Oak Woodland Historical Fire Intervals: Contrasting the Barrens of Tennessee and Cross Timbers of Oklahoma, USA. Fire Ecology. 12(2): 65-84.
Keywordsmanagement, oak woodland, pyrodiversity, restoration, spatial extent, succession
- Oak decline in the Boston Mountains, Arkansas, USA: Spatial and temporal patterns under two fire regimes
- Fire chronology and windstorm effects on persistence of a disjunct oak-shortleaf pine community
- Fire and human history of a barren-forest mosaic in Southern Indiana
XML: View XML