US Forest Service Research & Development
Contact Information
  • US Forest Service Research & Development
  • 1400 Independence Ave., SW
  • Washington, D.C. 20250-0003
  • 800-832-1355
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Becky Kerns

Becky K. Kerns

Research Ecologist
3200 SW Jefferson Way
United States

Phone: 541-750-7497
Contact Becky K. Kerns

Current Research

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.

Research Interests

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.

Past Research

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


Research Highlights


Assessing Climate Change Vulnerability of Tribally Important Ecosystem Services

Climate change is affecting tribally important ecosystem goods and services, including food, water, medicine, spiritual needs, and cultural iden ...


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 ...


Last updated on : 10/18/2021