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Individual Highlight

Managing fire-prone forests in multi-ownership landscapes

Photo of A public field tour in the Deschutes National Forest, Oregon. Resource managers, scientists, and the public discuss management strategies for fire-prone forests such as the Deschutes National Forest. A public field tour in the Deschutes National Forest, Oregon. Resource managers, scientists, and the public discuss management strategies for fire-prone forests such as the Deschutes National Forest. Snapshot : A Forest Service study reveals many new insights into a multi-ownership fire prone landscape in Oregon's eastern Cascade Range.. For example, federal forests that adopt more of a live-with-fire strategy rather than an exclude-all-fire strategy often have more fire-resilient forests than forests whose owners who try to exclude all fire, including prescribed fire.

Principal Investigators(s) :
Spies, Thomas 
Research Location : Oregon
Research Station : Pacific Northwest Research Station (PNW)
Year : 2017
Highlight ID : 1340

Summary

Fire-prone landscapes present many challenges for both managers and policymakers. A multi-disciplinary team of scientists with the Forest Service’s Pacific Northwest Research Station recently completed a study of the social and ecological dimensions of a multi-ownership fire prone landscape in Oregon's eastern Cascade Range. The study was designed to address the following questions: (1) How do current forest management approaches differ among ownerships across forests of central Oregon? (2) How are social networks that focus on fire structured and how might they influence adaptation to fire? (3) How does resilience to fire vary by ownership and environment? And, (4) How do different management strategies affect fire outcomes and ecosystem services? The work was unique in bringing together social, ecological, and computer scientists to conduct integrated research to apply an "agent based" landscape model to help understand how ecological and social variability, fire, and management interact across millions of acres of dry, fire-frequent forests. The results and the landscape modeling tool are being used to inform stakeholders with the Deschutes and Fremont-Winema National Forests about strategies to adapt to fire and alternative approaches to forest restoration.

Additional Resources

Forest Service Partners

External Partners

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