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Title: Variation in Surface and Crown Fire Hazard With Stand Age in Managed Coastal Western Hemlock Zone Forests in Southwestern British Columbia

Author: Feller, Michael C.; Pollock, Stefanie L.;

Date: 2006

Source: In: Andrews, Patricia L.; Butler, Bret W., comps. 2006. Fuels Management-How to Measure Success: Conference Proceedings. 28-30 March 2006; Portland, OR. Proceedings RMRS-P-41. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 367-380

Publication Series: Proceedings (P)

   Note: This article is part of a larger document. View the larger document

Description: Surface and crown fuels were measured in 186 stands ranging in age from 0 years after clearcutting to old-growth forests > 300 years old in Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) – western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla) – western redcedar (Thuja plicata) – dominated forests in southwestern British Columbia. Indexes of surface fire hazard based on woody debris loads, and of crown fire hazard based on 5 factors (canopy foliar bulk density, height to live crown, woody debris loads, ladder fuels, and snag quantities), were developed. Using the indexes developed, surface fire hazard followed a U-shaped trend with stand age, being highest for the first few years after clearcutting, declining to a minimum 20 to 40 years after harvesting before increasing. Crown fire hazard was lowest for the first few years after clearcutting, rose to a maximum 20 to 90 years after harvesting and then declined to low values in 100 to 150 year old forest, before rising to higher values in old-growth. In the absence of fuel reduction treatments, some post-harvesting age classes of forests will have higher surface or crown fire hazards than old-growth forests.

Keywords: fire, fire ecology, fuels management, surface fire hazard, crown fire hazard, British Columbia, woody debris

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Feller, Michael C.; Pollock, Stefanie L. 2006. Variation in Surface and Crown Fire Hazard With Stand Age in Managed Coastal Western Hemlock Zone Forests in Southwestern British Columbia. In: Andrews, Patricia L.; Butler, Bret W., comps. 2006. Fuels Management-How to Measure Success: Conference Proceedings. 28-30 March 2006; Portland, OR. Proceedings RMRS-P-41. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 367-380

 


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