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Mixed-conifer forests of central Oregon: Effects of logging and fire exclusion vary with environment

Posted date: October 07, 2015
Publication Year: 
2014
Authors: Merschel, Andrew G.; Spies, Thomas A.; Heyerdahl, Emily K.
Publication Series: 
Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Source: Ecological Applications. 24(7): 1670-1688.

Abstract

Twentieth-century land management has altered the structure and composition of mixed-conifer forests and decreased their resilience to fire, drought, and insects in many parts of the Interior West. These forests occur across a wide range of environmental settings and historical disturbance regimes, so their response to land management is likely to vary across landscapes and among ecoregions. However, this variation has not been well characterized and hampers the development of appropriate management and restoration plans. We identified mixed-conifer types in central Oregon based on historical structure and composition, and successional trajectories following recent changes in land use, and evaluated how these types were distributed across environmental gradients. We used field data from 171 sites sampled across a range of environmental settings in two subregions: the eastern Cascades and the Ochoco Mountains.

Citation

Merschel, Andrew G.; Spies, Thomas A.; Heyerdahl, Emily K. 2014. Mixed-conifer forests of central Oregon: Effects of logging and fire exclusion vary with environment. Ecological Applications. 24(7): 1670-1688.