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Research Highlights

Individual Highlight

Returning fire to the land: celebrating traditional knowledge and fire

Photo of Klamath River TREX 2015 [Oct. 10, 2015]. Karuk and Yurok ignitors prescribe burning in the Wildland-Urban Interface (Lake property, near Orleans, CA) to reinstate traditional burning in a modern context for fuels reductions, acorn research, and tribal food gathering enhancement. Klamath River TREX 2015 [Oct. 10, 2015]. Karuk and Yurok ignitors prescribe burning in the Wildland-Urban Interface (Lake property, near Orleans, CA) to reinstate traditional burning in a modern context for fuels reductions, acorn research, and tribal food gathering enhancement. Snapshot : What are the "must do" approaches for working with tribes for wildland fire research and management? Tribal members, managers, and researchersengaged to formulate solutions regarding the main topics regarding wildland fire: cross-jurisdictional work, fuels reduction strategies, and wildland fire management and research involving traditional knowledge. Key findings of that engagement are that successful management of wildland fires and fuels requires collaborative partnerships, sharing knowledge, culturally sensitive consultations, coordination, and communications for building trust.

Principal Investigators(s) :
Lake, Frank K. 
Research Location : Western United States
Research Station : Pacific Southwest Research Station (PSW)
Year : 2017
Highlight ID : 1383

Summary

Forest Service researchers and their partners convened two workshops to engage a diverse community of tribal and nontribal managers, scientists, and students. The first workshop in 2012 hosted by the Confederated Tribes of Salish and Kootenai Tribes' Forestry Department included tribal and federal managers, as well as tribal, academic, and federal researchers . The second workshop in 2014 was held in conjunction with the Large Wildland Fire Conference in Missoula, Mont.. At the first workshop, breakout sessions addressed the key topics ofcross-jurisdictional management, fuels reduction strategies, wildfire management, and research. At the second workshop, a subset of the first workshop topics were selected: communication, understanding, and trust; fuels reduction and prescribed fire; and wildfire. Many tribes across North America used fire as a tool to perpetuate habitats and resources that sustained their cultures, economies, traditions, and livelihoods. The federal government has a trust responsibility to American Indian tribes. This trust responsibility extends to federal agency and tribal governance for management of natural and cultural resources. Many tribes seek to use traditional burning in a modern context to achieve multiple resource objectives including reducing hazardous fuels and reintroducing fire into fire-adapted ecosystems to protect life, property, and valued resources. Scientists and managers can learn about fire ecology and effects from tribal Traditional Knowledge.

Forest Service Partners

External Partners

 
  • University of Idaho, Montana State University