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Title: Modern fire regime resembles historical fire regime in a ponderosa pine forest on Native American land

Author: Stan, Amanda B.; Fule, Peter Z.; Ireland, Kathryn B.; Sanderlin, Jamie S.;

Date: 2014

Source: International Journal of Wildland Fire. 23(5): 686-697.

Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Description: Forests on tribal lands in the western United States have seen the return of low-intensity surface fires for several decades longer than forests on non-tribal lands. We examined the surface fire regime in a ponderosa pinedominated (Pinus ponderosa) forest on the Hualapai tribal lands in the south-western United States. Using fire-scarred trees, we inferred temporal (frequency and seasonality) and spatial (synchrony) attributes and regulators of the fire regime over three land-use periods (historical, suppression, modern) between 1702 and 2007. Patterns of fire frequency and synchrony were similar, but fire seasonality was dissimilar, between the historical and modern periods. Logistic regression and generalised linear mixed models identified a suite of variables representing fuels, climate and human land uses that were associated with the probability of a site burning. Combined, these results allow for valuable insights regarding past fire spread and variability in fire frequency throughout our study area. In some respects, the current distinct fire regime in our study area, which predominately consists of prescribed fires implemented since the 1960s, resembles the past frequent surface fire regime that occurred here and in similar forest types on non-tribal lands in the south-western United States. Our results will be useful for informing adaptive management throughout the region as climate warms.

Keywords: climate, dendrochronology, fire scars, fuels, generalised linear mixed models, Hualapai Tribe, logistic regression models, Pinus ponderosa, prescribed fire, south-western United States

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Stan, Amanda B.; Fule, Peter Z.; Ireland, Kathryn B.; Sanderlin, Jamie S. 2014. Modern fire regime resembles historical fire regime in a ponderosa pine forest on Native American land. International Journal of Wildland Fire. 23(5): 686-697.

 


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