Variable Retention Fire Salvage Management Effects
There are many questions surrounding salvage logging after a stand replacing fire event. This study hopes to help us better understand the impacts associated with salvage logging at variable intensities. We are investigating the effects variable salvage retentions have on fuels, soils, snags and vegetation over time.
This study is being conducted in the Cone fire-salvaged portion of the Blacks Mountain Experimental Forest (BMEF)(See Images Below). The 10,300-acre BMEF was established in 1934. The forest of this area is generally of the inland ponderosa pine type. The fire regime of these forests generally is of the frequent, low-moderate severity type. (Click for more information about BMEF).
Sixteen square plots (5-acres each) and one rectangular plot (10-acres, 100% retention) were placed in the severely burned portion of the fire. Five levels of retention were randomly assigned to 15 units (three replications of each): 0% retained (4x), 25% basal area retained (3x), 50% basal area retained (3x), 75% basal area retained (3x), and 100% basal retained (4x). Within each plot, 25 permanent grid points were placed at 25 x 25m spacing. A 1/20th-acre circular plot is utilized at each grid point to measure the retained trees and four 100m transects measuring woody fuels and understory vegetation were randomly placed within each plot. All of these measurements will be continually re-measured over time at regular intervals.
Initial measurements were collected in 2004 and the secondary measurements are scheduled for 2006. Subsequently, the preliminary results and observations will be added to this section as the analysis is completed. The duration of this project is expected to continue for an extended period of time and many of the long-term effects should take many years to become evident. Feel free to contact Martin Ritchie PhD. or Carl Skinner (Science Team Leaders) if you have any questions about this project.