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This webinar highlighted results from a study investigating the ability of wildfire to act as a fuel treatment. The study evaluated whether or not wildfires limited the occurrence, size, and severity of subsequent wildfires in four large wilderness complexes in Idaho, Montana, and New Mexico. The study focused on protected areas to minimize potentially confounding anthropogenic factors (e.g., roads and fuel treatments) that may also affect fire behavior and effects. Study findings suggested that wildfires reduce the probability that subsequent fires will ignite, wildfires reduce the size of subsequent fires by acting as fuel breaks, and when wildfires do reburn previously burned areas, subsequent fire severity is significantly lower. The strength and longevity of the moderating effect of wildfires on subsequent fires varied by study area, suggesting that ecosystem-level processes controlling fire regime characteristics and regrowth of vegetation are responsible for these differences.

Media Record Details

Jan 21, 2015
Sean A. Parks

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Cataloging Information

Fire Behavior
Fire Effects
Ecological - First Order
Fire Intensity / Burn Severity
Patch Size
Fire History
Fire & Wilderness
Fire Regime
Fire and Landscape Mosaics
Montane wet mixed-conifer forest, Montane dry mixed-conifer forest

NRFSN number: 12802
Record updated: