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Title: A field guide for rapid assessment of post-wildfire recovery potential in sagebrush and pinon-juniper ecosystems in the Great Basin: Evaluating resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasive annual grasses and predicting vegetation response

Author: Miller, Richard F.; Chambers, Jeanne C.; Pellant, Mike;

Date: 2015

Source: Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-338. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. 70 p.

Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)

Description: This field guide provides a framework for rapidly evaluating post-fire resilience to disturbance, or recovery potential, and resistance to invasive annual grasses, and for determining the need and suitability of the burned area for seeding. The framework identifies six primary components that largely determine resilience to disturbance, resistance to invasive grasses, and potential successional pathways following wildfire, as well as the information sources and tools needed to evaluate each component. The components are: (1) characteristics of the ecological site; (2) vegetation composition and structure prior to the wildfire; (3) fire severity; (4) post-wildfire weather; (5) post-wildfire management, especially grazing; and (6) monitoring and adaptive management. The tools provided are: (1) a conceptual model of the key components that largely determine resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasive annual grasses of the burn area, (2) a guide to evaluate post-wildfire severity, (3) indicators to estimate pre-wildfire plant composition and structure if not known, and (4) an evaluation score sheet to rate an area’s potential post-wildfire resilience to disturbance, resistance to invasive annual grasses and, thus, the need for seeding and probability of success.

Keywords: restoration, post-fire rehabilitation, seeding, succession, invasive annual grasses, cheatgrass

Publication Notes:

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  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
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Miller, Richard F.; Chambers, Jeanne C.; Pellant, Mike. 2015. A field guide for rapid assessment of post-wildfire recovery potential in sagebrush and pinon-juniper ecosystems in the Great Basin: Evaluating resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasive annual grasses and predicting vegetation response. Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-338. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. 70 p.

 


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