Rocky Mountain Research Station Publications

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RM-RP-191: Wildfire effects on a ponderosa pine ecosystem: An Arizona case study


Campbell, R. E.; Baker, Jr., M. B.; Ffolliott, P. F.; Larson, F. R.; Avery, C. C. 1977. Wildfire effects on a ponderosa pine ecosystem: An Arizona case study. USDA For. Serv. Res. Pap. RM-191. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experimental Station.12 p.

A wildfire of variable severity swept through 717 acres (290 ha) of ponderosa pine forest in north-central Arizona in May 1972. Where the fire was intense it killed 90% of the small trees and 50% of the sawtimber, burned 2.6 in (6.5 cm) of forest floor to the mineral soil, and induced a water-repellent layer in the sandier soils. The reduced infiltration rates, which greatly increased water yield from severely burned areas during unusually heavy fall rains, caused soils to erode and removed some nutrients which had been mineralized by the fire. Water yields have declined each year toward prefire levels.

Keywords: fire, Pinus ponderosa, herbage production, water repellency, water yield, sediment production


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Title: RM-RP-191: Wildfire effects on a ponderosa pine ecosystem: An Arizona case study
Electronic Publish Date: February 12, 2008
Last Update:
February 12, 2008

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