Becky K. Kerns
3200 SW Jefferson Way
Contact Becky K. Kerns
1) The Season and Interval of Burn Project: Lead Scientist; 2) Fire and grazing interactions in ponderosa pine forests; 3) Interactions between fuel reduction, weeds, and seeding treatments in juniper woodlands; 4) Invasive species and climate change; 5) Response of Pacific Northwest vegetation to climte change; 6) Creating climate informed state-and-transition models using a dynamic global vegetation model.
I work to increase our understanding of how natural and human-caused disturbances and their interactions structure vegetation and plant communities. I conduct my research at multiple biological, spatial, and temporal scales using empirical, experimental, and landscape modeling approaches.
My past work has studied nontimber forest products, phytolith analysis, paleoecology, and geomorphology.
Why This Research is Important
Forests and rangelands are dynamic systems subject to a variety of disturbances, both natural and human-caused. These disturbances shape their composition and function and dictate, to some extent, the ecosystem services that are provided. Disturbances are a normal, necessary, and desired part of ecosystem dynamics. Human-caused disturbances may be unintentional or intentional and designed to effect a change in system function or to produce desired goods and services (e.g., timber harvest), but both may result in unanticipated and undesirable consequences, such as erosion, debris flow, and air pollution.
- Northern Arizona University, Ph.D. Forest Science 1999
- Northern Arizona University, M.S. Quarternary Studies 1994
- UC Santa Barbara, B.S. Geology 1988
Featured Publications & Products
- Buonopane, Michelle; Snider, Gabrielle; Kerns, Becky K.; Doescher, Paul S. 2013. Complex restoration challenges: weeds, seeds, and roads in a forested wildland urban interface.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Buonopane, Michelle; Thies, Walter G.; Niwa, Christine. 2011. Reintroducing fire into a ponderosa pine forest with and without cattle grazing: understory vegetation response.
- Littell, Jeremy S.; McKenzie, Donald; Kerns, Becky K.; Cushman, Samuel; Shaw, Charles G. 2011. Managing uncertainty in climate-driven ecological models to inform adaptation to climate change.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Thies, Walter G.; Niwa, Christine G. 2006. Season and severity of prescribed burn in ponderosa pine forests: implications for understory native and exotic plants..
- Kerns, Becky K.; Ager, Alan. 2007. Risk assessment for biodiversity conservation planning in Pacific Northwest forests.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Naylor, Bridgett J.; Buonopane, Michelle; Parks, Catherine G.; Rogers, Brendan. 2009. Modeling Tamarisk (Tamarix spp.) habitat and climate change effects in the northwestern United States.
- Kantor, Sylvia ; Kerns, Becky ; Day, Michelle . 2020. Can prescribed fire do the work we hired it to do.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Tortorelli, Claire ; Day, Michelle A.; Nietupski, Ty ; Barros, Ana M.G.; Kim, John B.; Krawchuk, Meg A. 2020. Invasive grasses: A new perfect storm for forested ecosystems.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Day, Michelle A. 2018. Prescribed fire regimes subtly alter ponderosa pine forest plant community structure.
- Kim, John B.; Kerns, Becky K.; Drapek, Raymond J.; Pitts, G. Stephen; Halofsky, Jessica E. 2018. Simulating vegetation response to climate change in the Blue Mountains with MC2 dynamic global vegetation model.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Powell, David C.; Mellmann-Brown, Sabine; Carnwath, Gunnar; Kim, John. 2017. Effects of Climatic Variability and Change on Upland Vegetation in the Blue Mountains Chapter 6 ..
- Westlind, Douglas J.; Kerns, Becky K. 2017. Long-term effects of burn season and frequency on ponderosa pine forest fuels and seedlings.
- Oliver, Marie; Kerns, Becky; Kim, John; Kline, Jeff. 2017. Mapping the future: U.S. exposure to multiple landscape stressors.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Day, Michelle A. 2017. The importance of disturbance by fire and other abiotic and biotic factors in driving cheatgrass invasion varies based on invasion stage.
- Oliver, Marie; Peterson, David W.; Kerns, Becky. 2016. Predicting the unpredictable: potential climate change impacts on vegetation in the Pacific Northwest.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Kim, John B.; Kline, Jeffrey D.; Day, Michelle A. 2016. US exposure to multiple landscape stressors and climate change.
- Hemstrom, Miles A.; Halofsky, Jessica E.; Conklin, David R.; Halofsky, Joshua S.; Bachelet, Dominique; Kerns, Becky K. 2014. Chapter 7: Developing climate-informed state-and-transition models.
- Peterson, David W.; Kerns, Becky K.; Dodson, Erich Kyle. 2014. Climate change effects on vegetation in the Pacific Northwest: a review and synthesis of the scientific literature and simulation model projections.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Westlind, Douglas J. 2013. Effect of season and interval of prescribed burn on ponderosa pine butterfly defoliation patterns.
- Kline, Jeffrey D.; Kerns, Becky K.; Day, Michelle A.; Hammer, Roger B. 2013. Mapping multiple forest threats in the northwestern United States.
- Oliver, Marie; Kerns, Becky K.; Buonopane, Michelle . 2012. A closer look: decoupling the effects of prescribed fire and grazing on vegetation in a ponderosa pine forests.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Hemstrom, Miles A.; Conklin, David; Yospin, Gabriel I.; Johnson, Bart; Bachelet, Dominique; Bridgham, Scott. 2012. Approaches to incorporating climate change effects in state and transition simulation models of vegetation.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Shlisky, Ayn J.; Daniel, Colin J., tech. eds. 2012. Proceedings of the First Landscape State-and-Transition Simulation Modeling Conference, June 14 16, 2011, Portland, Oregon.
- Furniss, M.J.; Millar, C.I.; Peterson, D.L.; Joyce, L.A.; Neilson, R.P.; Halofsky, J.E.; Kerns, B.K. 2009. Adapting to Climate Change: A Short Course for Land Managers.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Moore, Margaret M.; Hart, Stephen C. 2008. Understanding ponderosa pine forest-grassland vegetation dynamics at Fort Valley Experimental Forest using phytolith analysis.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Moore, Margaret M.; Hart, Stephen C. 2008. Understanding ponderosa pine forest-grassland vegetation dynamics at Fort Valley Experimental Forest using phytolith analysis (P-53).
- Kerns, Becky K.; Ohmann, Janet L. 2004. Evaluation and prediction of shrub cover in coastal Oregon forests (USA).
- Kerns, Becky K; Alexander, Susan J.; Bailey, John D. 2004. Huckleberry abundance, stand conditions, and use in western Oregon: evaluating the role of forest management..
- Kerns, Becky K.:. 2001. Diagnostic phytoliths for a ponderosa pine-bunchgrass community near Flagstaff, Arizona.
- Kerns, Becky K.; Moore, Margeret M.; Hart, Stephen C. 2001. Estimating forest-grassland dynamics using soil phytolith assemblages and δ13C of soil organic matter.
|Cheatagrass response to prescribed burning in Oregon studied over 10 years|
Scientists created a model to explain cheatgrass dynamics at different invasion stages, from local cheatgrass establishment to broader scale in ...
|Mapping Coincidence of Landscape Exposure to Multiple Stressors Including Climate Change|
New maps factor in climate change and illustrate landscape exposure to additional stressors (wildfire potential, insects and disease risk, urban ...
|Scientists develop current and future habitat suitability maps for invasive tamarisk species|
Tamarisks are shrubs or small trees considered by some to be among the most aggressively invasive and potentially detrimental exotic plants in t ...