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A plan for landscape fire restoration in the Southwestern Borderlands

Gottfried, Gerald J.; Allen, Larry S. 2009. A plan for landscape fire restoration in the Southwestern Borderlands. Ecological Restoration. 27(2): 129-131.

Fires were prevalent in the Southwestern Borderlands of Arizona and New Mexico prior to the arrival of European-American settlers in the 1880s. The almost total exclusion of fires for more than 100 years has been linked to declines in biological diversity and a loss of productivity associated with the encroachment of woody vegetation into the grasslands and open woodlands. Private and public land managers agreed that reintroducing fire could improve or reverse these landscape changes. The Coronado National Forest developed the Peloncillo Programmatic Fire Plan after intense consultations with federal, state, and county agencies and the ranching community to reintroduce landscape level prescribed and managed fire into the Peloncillo Mountains (Allen 1999). The final plan helped streamline the management decision and approval processes that previously were delayed by long, complicated, and often contentious discussions. The Plan and the consultation process that led to consensus among diverse partners can serve as a model for the development of programmatic fire plans in other areas.

Keywords: fire, Southwestern Borderlands, Arizona, New Mexico, Coronado National Forest, eloncillo Programmatic Fire Plan

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Title: RMRS Other Publications: A plan for landscape fire restoration in the Southwestern Borderlands
Electronic Publish Date: June 18, 2009
Last Update:
June 18, 2009

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