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Keyword: forest management

Combining fire and erosion modeling to target forest management activities

Publications Posted on: October 05, 2015
Forests deliver a number of important ecosystem services including clean water. When forests are disturbed by wildfire, the timing, quantity and quality of runoff are altered. A modeling study was carried out in a forested watershed in California to determine the risk of wildfire, and the potential post-fire sediment delivery from approximately 6-ha hillslope polygons within a 1500-km2 basin following a wildfire event.

Santa Fe Watershed Fuels Reduction Project: Avian Point Counts

Datasets Posted on: August 27, 2015
Data were collected during a fuels reduction project conducted by the Santa Fe National Forest in the Santa Fe Municipal Watershed from 2002 to 2007. Fuel reduction includes mechanical thinning, burning of piles and broadcast burning though only a small portion of the study area was burned during wildlife monitoring. In addition to areas thinned, we collected data in adjacent areas that were not actively managed.

Interactions of fuel treatments, wildfire severity, and carbon dynamics in dry conifer forests

Publications Posted on: August 21, 2015
Wildfires have been increasing in size and severity over recent decades. Forest managers use fuel treatments, including tree thinning and prescribed burning, to reduce the risk of high-severity fire. The impact of fuel treatments on carbon dynamics is not fully understood; previous research indicates that because carbon is removed during fuel treatments, the net effect may not be a reduction of carbon lost in the case of wildfire.

Considerations for restoring temperate forests of tomorrow: Forest restoration, assisted migration, and bioengineering

Publications Posted on: August 19, 2015
Tomorrow’s forests face extreme pressures from contemporary climate change, invasive pests, and anthropogenic demands for other land uses. These pressures, collectively, demand land managers to reassess current and potential forest management practices.

Disturbance history of the Medicine Bow Range, Wyoming, using historical documents, contemporary forest inventory, and lake sediment cores

Publications Posted on: August 18, 2015
In the late 1860s, Euro-American settlement and related activities, including logging, began affecting the composition and structure of forests of the western United States. These impacts were likely to be most substantial along the corridor of the trans-continental railroad.

Ecology of the Mexican Spotted Owl

Projects Posted on: August 14, 2015
Rocky Mountain Research Station (RMRS) scientists have been at the forefront of efforts to understand the ecology of the threatened Mexican spotted owls (Strix occidentalis lucida) for more than 25 years. These scientists and their cooperators have produced most of the existing scientific information on this species. Today, RMRS scientists continue to be actively involved in developing new knowledge on this owl, synthesizing existing information, and working with managers to integrate habitat requirements for the owl and its important prey species into land management plans.

Northern goshawk and its prey in the Black Hills: Habitat assessment

Publications Posted on: July 16, 2015
The northern goshawk is classified as a Sensitive Species in all USDA Forest Service regions, including on the Black Hills National Forest in western South Dakota and northeastern Wyoming. An assessment was conducted of the quality of northern goshawk nesting and foraging habitat, along with the habitat quality of 22 of the goshawk’s prey species.

Forest restoration is forward thinking

Publications Posted on: July 13, 2015
It is not surprising to us that the topic of forest restoration is being discussed in the Journal of Forestry. It is a topic frequently bantered about in the literature; a quick search in Google Scholar for "forest restoration" generates more than 1 million hits.

Canada lynx living in spruce beetle impacted forests

Projects Posted on: July 13, 2015
Canada lynx, and their primary prey snowshoe hares, live in high-elevation spruce-fir forests, which are increasingly modified by spruce-bark beetle outbreaks. The goal of our research is to combine lynx use of insect-impacted forests with measures of forest condition.  Our results will inform forest prescriptions that facilitate timber-salvage and lynx conservation.

Tracking Canada lynx in insect-impacted forests

Media Gallery Posted on: July 13, 2015
Canada lynx, and their primary prey snowshoe hares, live in high-elevation spruce-fir forests, which are increasingly modified by spruce-bark beetle outbreaks.  One important management question is how the timber from these insect-impacted forests can be salvaged in ways that also facilitate lynx conservation.  This issue is of particular concern since climate change is expected to increase the severity of insect-related disturbance in conifer forests.