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Quantitative assessment of forest burn severity and determination of its spatial variation are important for post-fire forest restoration and forest fire management. In this paper, we assessed forest burn severity using pre- and post-fire Landsat TM/ETM+ data and field-surveyed data and explored the spatial variation in burn severity and its influencing factors. Our results showed a relatively strong linear relationship between normalized burn ratio (NBR) and composite burn index (CBI) (R2 = 0.63), suggesting that NBR was the best spectral index and could be used to assess forest burn severity in Heilongjiang Province. The forest burn severity showed obvious spatial variation. The majority of heavily burned areas...
Semiarid forests across the western USA and elsewhere are being thinned to reduce risk from fire, restore previous ecological conditions, and/or salvage trees from recently burned areas. Prescriptions and monitoring for thinning generally focus on biotic characteristics of vegetation, like tree density, rather than abiotic characteristics of soils and their loss, which are usually only considered in association with water erosion. Recent studies indicate that sediment transport by wind in forests is substantial and can exceed water transport, yet forest wind erosion responses to tree thinning and/or burning are unknown. We measured wind-driven horizontal dust flux, a metric related to wind erosion, with respect...
Conclusions:Severe fire regimes create essential habitat conditions for certain habitat specialists.Thresholds/Learnings:
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In the dry southwestern United States, snowmelt plays a crucial role as a water source for people, vegetation, and wildlife. However, snow droughts significantly lower snow accumulations, disrupting these critical water supplies for local communities and ecosystems. Despite its large influence on land- and water-resource management, snow drought has only recently been properly defined and its historical distribution and effects on key natural resources are essentially unknown. To remedy this serious knowledge gap, project researchers are examining the causes, effects, and forecastability of snow drought to provide needed scientific information and guidance to planners and decision makers. The central goals of...
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Synopsis: The goal of this study was to examine contaminant loadings associated with stormwater runoff from recently burned areas in urban fringe areas of southern California, to derive regional patterns of runoff and contaminant loadings in this context. Postfire stormwater runoff was sampled from five wildfires that each burned between 115 and 658 km2 of natural open space between 2003 and 2009. The area is characterized by classic Mediterranean climate conditions of relatively mild to cool wet winter and warm to hot dry summers. Between two and five storm events were sampled per site over the first one to two years following the fires for basic constituents, metals, nutrients, total suspended solids, and polycyclic...
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Historical wildland fire perimeters. Contains fires greater than 1000 acres between 1950 and 1987, inclusive, and fires greater than 100 acres between 1988 and 2005, inclusive. Also contains 10 meter buffers around reported start locations for fires greater than 1000 acres for which no perimeter has been located.
Post-fire shifts in vegetation composition will have broad ecological impacts. However, information characterizing post-fire recovery patterns and their drivers are lacking over large spatial extents. In this analysis we used Landsat imagery collected when snow cover (SCS) was present, in combination with growing season (GS) imagery, to distinguish evergreen vegetation from deciduous vegetation. We sought to (1) characterize patterns in the rate of post-fire, dual season Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) across the region, (2) relate remotely sensed patterns to field-measured patterns of re-vegetation, and (3) identify seasonally-specific drivers of post-fire rates of NDVI recovery. Rates of post-fire...
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Synopsis: The objective of this study was to examine initial effects of the 2003 Lost Creek wildfire (southwestern Rocky Mountains of Alberta) on concentrations and production (yield and total export) of several nitrogen (N) forms, and to explore initial recovery of these effects within the first 3 years after the fire. During the first postfire year, nitrate (NO3–), dissolved organic nitrogen (DON), and total nitrogen (TN) concentrations in severely burned watershed streams were 6.5, 4.1, and 5.3 times greater, respectively, than those in reference streams. Weaker effects were evident for concentrations of ammonium (NH4+; 1.5 times) and total particulate nitrogen (TPN; 3.0 times). A rapid decline in mean watershed...
Biochar production and mixing in soil are seen as the best options for atmospheric carbon sequestration, providing simultaneous benefits to soil and opportunities for distributed energy generation. The proximity of biomass source and biochar dispersal greatly reduces the energy and emissions footprint of the whole process. The viability of the whole biochar process is examined from two boundary points: is there enough biomass around to have significant impact on the atmospheric CO2 levels and is there enough soil area for biochar dispersal. The answers are soundly positive, both for the world as a whole and for Canada, for which a more detailed analysis was done. However, the massive adoption of biochar solution...
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Synopsis: The effects of the 17,400 ha Cerro Grande fire patch in New Mexico on erosion and sedimentation processes were analyzed by this study, located in the Jemez Mountains upstream of the Los Alamos Reservoir, New Mexico. This study provides a unique data set demonstrating post-fire erosion rates relative to pre-fire conditions. The fire affected a large fraction of the watershed, with 32% of the basin experiencing a moderate to high severity burn, including some of the steepest mountainous portions of the basin. Average sediment deposition was 150 m3/year prior to the fire, equivalent to an average basin-wide denudation rate of 0.009 mm/year. The year after the fire, over 21,800 m3 of sediment accumulated in...
Wildland fire is a global phenomenon, and a result of interactions between climate?weather, fuels and people. Our climate is changing rapidly primarily through the release of greenhouse gases that may have profound and possibly unexpected impacts on global fire activity. The present paper reviews the current understanding of what the future may bring with respect to wildland fire and discusses future options for research and management. To date, research suggests a general increase in area burned and fire occurrence but there is a lot of spatial variability, with some areas of no change or even decreases in area burned and occurrence. Fire seasons are lengthening for temperate and boreal regions and this trend should...
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The study examined the effects of forest harvest practices that approximate natural disturbance processes to evaluate whether these practices help conserve biodiversity. Past research has shown that management practices that mimic natural disturbance events such as forest fires is a successful habitat conservation strategy, particularly for boreal forest bird communities. The study investigated how bird communities differed between postharvest and postfire stands in the mid-boreal region of Alberta. The research found that the most significant difference between postfire and postharvest landscapes is the amount and orientation of residual live and dead trees. Postfire stands consist largely of standing dead trees...
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Historical wildland fire perimeters. Contains fires greater than 1,000 acres between 1950 and 1987, inclusive, and fires greater than 100 acres between 1988 and 2006, inclusive. Also contains 10 meter buffers around reported start locations of fires for which no perimeter has been located.


    map background search result map search result map Changes in bird communities in boreal mixedwood forest: harvest and wildfire effects over 30 years. A Five Year Record of Sedimentation in the Los Alamos Reservoir, New Mexico, Following the Cerro Grande Fire Wildfire Impacts on nitrogen concentration and production from headwater streams in southern Alberta's Rocky Mountains. Stormwater contaminant loading following southern California wildfires Alaska Fire History (1950 - 2006) - Acres Burned Learning From Recent Snow Droughts To Improve Forecasting of Water Availability for People and Forests BLM REA SNK 2010 FI C FireScars poly Data release for tracking rates of post-fire conifer regeneration distinct from deciduous vegetation recovery across the western U.S. A Five Year Record of Sedimentation in the Los Alamos Reservoir, New Mexico, Following the Cerro Grande Fire Wildfire Impacts on nitrogen concentration and production from headwater streams in southern Alberta's Rocky Mountains. Changes in bird communities in boreal mixedwood forest: harvest and wildfire effects over 30 years. BLM REA SNK 2010 FI C FireScars poly Stormwater contaminant loading following southern California wildfires Learning From Recent Snow Droughts To Improve Forecasting of Water Availability for People and Forests Data release for tracking rates of post-fire conifer regeneration distinct from deciduous vegetation recovery across the western U.S. Alaska Fire History (1950 - 2006) - Acres Burned