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Project ID: 06-3-4-10

Year: 2006

Date Started: 07/21/2006

Date Completed: 10/07/2009

Title: Post-Fire Treatment Impacts on Fine Fuels in Westside Sierra Nevada Forests

Project Proposal Abstract: Large stand-replacing fires have generally replaced low and medium intensity surface fires in the mid-elevation mixed conifer forests of the Sierra Nevada. It is the policy of the U.S. Forest Service to reduce fuels and restore severely burned stands. Salvage logging reduces heavy fuels and generates funds for reforestation. A major cause of tree seedling failure in salvage-logged areas is competition from shrubs in the first few years of a plantation. To release the competitive pressure, a variety of silvicultural techniques are typically used, such as grubbing, mastication, tilling and herbicide application. Some of these release treatments have been implicated in annual grass invasions that greatly alter the fuel characteristics of the site by increasing flashy fuels that promote repeat fires and set back forest regeneration efforts. There is a need for research on the effects of these post-burn treatments with respect to emerging fine fuels. This project addresses AFP 2006-3, Task 4 and its goal is to understand how postfire restoration practices affect early successional processes, including alien annual grass invasion, and the subsequent impact on fuel structure. This study will investigate how treatments affect plant community composition, both alien plant invasion and tree regeneration, fuel load, and fuel structure in four major fire areas in the Sierra Nevada (Stanislaus Complex of 1987, Cleveland Fire of 1992, Star Fire of 2001, and McNally Fire of 2002). Sites will be selected that have received the following treatments: a) mastication, b) salvage-logging followed by conifer planting and grubbing release treatment, c) salvage-logging followed by conifer planting and herbicide release treatment, d) salvage-logging followed by deep soil tilling, conifer planting and herbicide release treatment, e) no salvage logging followed by conifer planting. f) no treatment (control).Vegetation types will include mixed conifer dry forest, mixed conifer moist forest and red fir forest. By using existing treatments on national forests that have detailed site histories, we will be able to quantify the effects of restoration treatments on fine fuels through time. The results will form a science basis for weighing some of the potential effects of future restoration plans, as specifically requested by national forest administrators.

Principal Investigator: Jon E. Keeley

Agency/Organization: USGS-Geological Survey

Branch or Dept: WERC-Sequoia & Kings Canyon Field Station


Other Project Collaborators

Type

Name

Agency/Organization

Branch or Dept

Co-Principal Investigator

Thomas W. McGinnis

USGS-Geological Survey

WERC-Sequoia & Kings Canyon Field Station

Federal Cooperator

Jon E. Keeley

USGS-Geological Survey

WERC-Sequoia & Kings Canyon Field Station


Project Locations

Consortium

California


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
view or print   1753 Government Publication Fuel Buildup and Potential Fire Behavior After Stand-Replacing Fires, Logging Fire-Killed Trees and Herbicide Shrub Removal in Sierra Nevada Forests
view or print go to website 2513 Journal Article Western Journal of Applied Forestry
view or print   2502 Journal Article Forest Ecology and Management
    1055 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Post-Fire Treatment Effects on Fine Fuels in Westside Sierra Nevada Forests
    1056 Poster Post-Fire Treatment Effects on Fine Fuels in Westside Sierra Nevada Forests: Southern Sierra Science Symposium, 2008
    1057 Poster Estimating Aboveground Biomass for Broadleaf Woody Plants and Young Conifers in Sierra Nevada Forests
    5560 Field Demonstration/Tour Toured Star Fire field site for Post-Fire Treatment Impacts on Fine Fuels in Westside Sierra Nevada Forests with USDA Forest Service and USGS personnel
  go to website 6947 Website Post-Fire Treatment Impacts on Fine Fuels in Westside Sierra Nevada Forests http://www.werc.usgs.gov/Project.aspx?ProjectID=177

Supporting Documents

The following supporting documents are available for this project.

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Brief


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