Funded Research Projects: FOREST ECOLOGY

Inland PNW Post Fire Management

Research Sponsored By: US Forest Service
Principal Investigator: Jerry Franklin
Project Description
Forest fires on public land in the Inland Pacific Northwest are increasing in severity and extent threatening a wide array of ecosystem services. Post-fire management actions influence long-term trajectories of vegetation and the characteristics of subsequent wildfires. The Joint Fire Science Program has request JFSP research on the changing characteristics of post-fire landscapes, and the influence of management activities on the pattern of vegetation and fuel succession. Research outcomes are intended to provide guidance to help manage post-fire landscapes for increased resiliency. We will use recent, extensive fires on the Colville and Okanagon-Wenatchee National Forests to study the drivers of fire severity patterns and their relationships with past and potential future fires. In doing so, we will address the following questions: (1) What characteristics of post-fire landscapes are shaping the temporal and spatial patterns of vegetation and fuels, and how are these patterns changing in response to changing climate or wildfire management strategies? (2) How have past post-fire management actions (e.g., timber salvage, grazing, re-planting or re-seeding, fuels management) influenced fire severity and effects? (3) What kinds and patterns of management actions (e.g., fuels management) can enhance landscape resilience in terms of fire severity, extent, and effects? (4) How does post-fire treatment scale influence treatment effectiveness?