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Individual Highlight

The Effects of Landscape Restoration Strategies on Fire and Ecosystem Services Vary with Rate of Treatment in a Fire-prone Multi-ownership Region

Photo of Tree marked for a restoration treatment on the Deschutes National Forest. Oregon Department of Forestry.Tree marked for a restoration treatment on the Deschutes National Forest. Oregon Department of Forestry.Snapshot : The results and the landscape modeling tool are being used by the Deschutes National Forest and the Deschutes Collaborative Forest Landscape Restoration Project to facilitate discussion and development of policies and practices for accelerating landscape-scale forest restoration efforts.

Principal Investigators(s) :
Spies, ThomasWhite, Eric M.
Kline, Jeffrey D.Charnley, Susan
Research Location : Oregon
Research Station : Pacific Northwest Research Station (PNW)
Year : 2016
Highlight ID : 1109


Fire-prone landscapes present many challenges for both managers and policy makers in developing adaptive behaviors and institutions. Researchers used an agent-based landscape model to examine how alternative management scenarios affect fire and ecosystem services metrics in a fire-prone multi-ownership landscape in the eastern Cascades of Oregon. Scenarios with federal restoration treatments had slightly less high-severity fire than a scenario without treatment. Treatments appeared to be more effective at reducing high-severity fire in years with more fire than in years with less fire. Under the current management scenario, timber production could be maintained for at least 50 years on federal lands. Under an accelerated restoration scenario, timber production fell due to shortage of areas meeting current stand structure treatment targets. Tradeoffs between restoration outcomes (e.g. open forests with large fire-resistant trees) and habitat for species that require dense older forests were evident. For example, percent area of nesting habitat for northern spotted owls was somewhat less after 50 years under the restoration scenarios than under no management.

Forest Service Partners

External Partners

  • Deschutes National Forest
  • Fremont-Winema National Forest
  • Deschutes Forest Landscape Collaborative
  • Lakeview Forest Landscape Collaborative
  • Oregon State University