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BMNRI Home > Publications > Abstract: Historical Fire Regimes



Historical Fire Regimes of the Blue Mountains [ Tech Notes No. 1 (HTML, 22k) ]

by J. Agee and K. Maruoka (University of Washington)

Fire has been an important natural disturbance process in the Blue Mountains for millions of years. It has favored certain species over others, recycled nutrients, and had a large influence on the landscapes. One way to understand the variability of the role of fire is through the concept of the fire regime. Historical fire regimes and plant adaptations to fire are described for several Blue Mountains ecosystems. Understanding of the historical role of fire is important to deciding the role of fire in the future. In wilderness areas, natural fires may appropriately be allowed to burn under some conditions. In forests where ponderosa pine is a dominant or potential dominant, prescribed fires may play an important role in future management. However, because of smoke and air quality concerns, fuel buildups, and species composition changes, fire may be but one of several management strategies employed. Fire is a tool, not the rule.

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US Forest Service - Pacific Northwest Research Station, Blue Mountains National Resources Institute
Last Modified: Monday, 16 December 2013 at 14:18:42 CST

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