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Project ID: 03-3-3-57

Year: 2003

Date Started: 07/01/2003

Date Completed: 01/02/2008

Title: The Effects of Prescribed Fire Season and Fire Surrogates on Crown Fire Adapted Knob Cone Pine Forests

Project Proposal Abstract: Knobcone pine (Pinus attenuata) forests are challenging to manage because high intensity crown fires are thought to be necessary for successful regeneration. The use of prescribed crown fires produces high amounts of emissions and air quality regulators are becoming less supportive of such fires, especially if alternatives treatments are available. Many knobcone pine forests are surrounded by urban-wildiand intermix areas and some (BLM Cow Mountain) are used for recreational purposes such as off-road vehicle use and camping which further restricts management options. The use of high severity crown fires is rare in these ecosystems, particularly in the historic fall season when adjacent vegetation is at high fire risk. The effects of the season of prescribed fire and fire surrogates is not understood in knobcone pine forests. Burning in the spring reduces the chance for fire escapes but may be inappropriate for regeneration because this coincides with the beginning of the dry season. There is no published information on the effects of fire surrogates treatments (tree falling and lop and scatter of activity fuels with and without prescribed fire) in these ecosystems. The objective of this study is to contrast the efficacy of prescribed burning in different seasons, mechanical methods and fire, and mechanical methods alone in regenerating knobcone pine forests. This work will assist in the development of land management plans for the BLM Cow Mountain National Recreational Area. In achieving the primary objective several secondary objectives will be addressed including the effect of the season of fire and fire surrogates on (1) fire hazard reduction, (2) recovery of competing vegetation, (3) resurgence of fuels, and (4) costs of the different treatments, and (5) identification of the most effective treatment for regeneration of knobcone pine that is least intrusive to air quality. An experiment is proposed at the Bureau of Land Management Cow Mountain Recreation Area using a complete randomize design with replication (3 replicates for prescribed fire treatments including spring and fall burns, 3 replicates of mechanical and fire treatments including felling and iop and scatter followed by prescribed fire in spring and fall, and 3 replicates of mechanical only in spring and fall). Pre-treatment vegetation and fuels data will be collected in all units and post-treatment tree, shrub, and fuel variables will be measured. Technology transfer will occur with a combination of written materials, a world wide web site, and short courses for manages. The University of California Extension services will be used to disseminate results.

Principal Investigator: James F. Dawson

Agency/Organization: BLM-Bureau of Land Management

Branch or Dept: Ukiah Field Office

Other Project Collaborators




Branch or Dept

Co-Principal Investigator

Joe McBride

University of California-Berkeley

Department of Environmental Sciences-Policy & Management

Co-Principal Investigator

Scott L. Stephens

University of California-Berkeley

Department of Environmental Sciences-Policy & Management

Federal Cooperator

James F. Dawson

BLM-Bureau of Land Management

Ukiah Field Office

Project Locations

Fire Science Exchange Network


There are no project locations identified for this project.

Project Deliverables

Final Report view or print

("Results presented in JFSP Final Reports may not have been peer-reviewed and should be interpreted as tentative until published in a peer-reviewed source.")

  ID Type Title
  go to website 1451 Website  
    1452 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Interagency Resource Advisory Council Meeting
view or print   6879 Poster Fire Ecology on California’s Public Lands and Preserves

Supporting Documents

There are no supporting documents available for this project.

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