Table of Contents

Fire Ecology
Volume 11, Issue 2 - 2015
DOI: 10.4996/fireecology.1102

About the Cover

Classic Article

The Desert Grassland, Past and Present, with an Introduction by Mitchel P. McClaran

Author: Robert R. Humphrey
Pages: 1-11
DOI: 10.4996/fireecology.1102001

Most of the grassland areas below about 4,000 feet in southwestern North America are commonly referred to as the desert grassland (Shantz and Zon 1924) or, more occasionally, as the desert plains (Weaver and Clements 1929).  This association extends discontinuously from southwestern Texas, through southern New Mexico, into southeastern Arizona and south into Mexico.

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Research Articles

Calibration and Validation of Immediate Post-Fire Satellite-Derived Data to Three Severity Metrics

Authors: Jay D. Miller and Brad Quayle
Pages: 12-30
DOI: 10.4996/fireecology.1102012

Since 2007, the USDA Forest Service’s Remote Sensing Applications Center (RSAC) has been producing fire severity data within the first 30 to 45 days after wildfire containment (i.e., initial assessments [IA]), for wildfires that occur on USDA Forest Service managed lands, to support post-fire management actions.  Satellite image-derived map products are produced using calibrations of the relativized differenced normalized burn ratio (RdNBR) to the Composite Burn Index (CBI), percent change in tree basal area (BA), and percent change in canopy cover (CC).

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Vegetation Response to Burn Severity, Native Grass Seeding, and Salvage Logging

Authors: Penelope Morgan, Marshell Moy, Christine A. Droske, Sarah A. Lewis, Leigh B. Lentile, Peter R. Robichaud, Andrew T. Hudak, and Christopher J. Williams
Pages: 31-58
DOI: 10.4996/fireecology.1102031

As the size and extent of wildfires has increased in recent decades, so has the cost and extent of post-fire management, including seeding and salvage logging.  However, we know little about how burn severity, salvage logging, and post-fire seeding interact to influence vegetation recovery long-term.  We sampled understory plant species richness, diversity, and canopy cover one to six years post fire (2006 to 2009, and 2011) on 72 permanent plots selected in a stratified random sample to define post-fire vegetation response to burn severity, post-fire seeding with native grasses, and salvage logging on the 2005 School Fire in eastern Washington.

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Principles of Effective USA Federal Fire Management Plans

Authors: Marc D. Meyer, Susan L. Roberts, Robin Wills, Matthew L. Brooks, and Eric M. Winford
Pages: 59-83
DOI: 10.4996/fireecology.1102059

Federal fire management plans are essential implementation guides for the management of wildland fire on federal lands.  Recent changes in federal fire policy implementation guidance and fire science information suggest the need for substantial changes in federal fire management plans of the United States.  Federal land management agencies are also undergoing land management planning efforts that will initiate revision of fire management plans across the country.

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Fire Enhances Whitebark Pine Seedling Establishment, Survival, and Growth

Author: Judy L. Perkins
Pages: 84-99
DOI: 10.4996/fireecology.1102084

Periodic fire is thought to improve whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis Engelm.) regeneration by reducing competition and creating openings, but the mechanisms by which fire affects seedling establishment are poorly understood.  I compared seedling vegetation production in adjacent sites, one last burned in 1880 and the other in 1988, to test the hypothesis that recent fire increases whitebark pine seedling growth.  I experimentally tested effects of fire on seedling recruitment and growth by planting seeds in prescribed burned and nearby unburned sites.  Experimental results showed nearly three times greater seed germination and seedling survival in recently prescribed burn plots.

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Pile Burning Effects on Soil Water Repellency, Infiltration, and Downslope Water Chemistry in the Lake Tahoe Basin, USA

Authors: Ken R. Hubbert, Matt Busse, Steve Overby, Carol Shestak, and Ross Gerrard
Pages: 100-118
DOI: 10.4996/fireecology.1102100

Thinning of conifers followed by pile burning has become a popular treatment to reduce fuel loads in the Lake Tahoe Basin, USA.  However, concern has been voiced about burning within or near riparian areas because of the potential effect on nutrient release and, ultimately, lake water quality.  Our objective was to quantify the effects of pile burning on soil physical and chemical properties and resulting near-stream surface and subsurface water chemistry.  Twenty-seven hand-built piles of three contrasting fuelbed types (large wood, mixed-diameter slash, small-diameter slash) were burned.

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Impacts of Fire on Snowshoe Hares in Glacier National Park, Montana, USA

Authors: Ellen Cheng, Karen E. Hodges, and L. Scott Mills
Pages: 119-136
DOI: 10.4996/fireecology.1102119

Forest fires fundamentally shape the habitats available for wildlife.  Current predictions for fire under a warming climate suggest larger and more severe fires may occur, thus challenging scientists and managers to understand and predict impacts of fire on focal species, especially species of management concern.  Snowshoe hares (Lepus americanus Erxleben) are a common and important prey animal in boreal forests and are the primary prey for the US federally threatened Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis Kerr), so understanding hare dynamics in post-fire landscapes is critical for managing lynx.

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