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The Rangeland Vegetation Simulator: A user-driven system for quantifying production, succession, disturbance and fuels in non-forest environments

Posted date: December 27, 2016
Publication Year: 
2016
Authors: Reeves, Matt C.; Frid, Leonardo
Publication Series: 
Paper (invited, offered, keynote)
Source: In: Iwaasa, Alan; Lardner, H. A. (Bart); Schellenberg, Mike; Willms, Walter; Larson, Kathy, eds. Proceedings of the 10th International Rangelands Congress: The Future Management of Grazing and Wild Lands in a High-Tech World; 16-22 July, 2016; Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. The International Rangeland Congress. p. 1062-1063.

Abstract

Rangeland landscapes occupy roughly 662 million acres in the coterminous U.S. (Reeves and Mitchell 2011) and their vegetation responds quickly to climate and management, with high relative growth rates and inter-annual variability. Current national decision support systems in the U.S. such as the Interagency Fuels Treatment Decision Support System (IFT-DSS) require spatially explicit information describing production, fuels, grazing capacity and successional trajectory. However, no single system presently offers this information. In addition, issues of increasing national attention, such as preservation of lekking birds (e.g. greater sagegrouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), and greater prairie chicken (Tympanuchus cupido)), has prompted new management guidelines such as stubble height standards, but ecological tools for predicting this type of management outcome on rangelands are quite limited in their ability to predict these variables. Therefore a system is needed that quantifies these vegetation and fuel characteristics in sufficient detail to permit estimations of annual production, treatment success, grazing capacity, and fire behavior and effects. This situation inspired our project to develop a comprehensive program for simulating succession, productivity, and fuels in non-forest environments. This system is called the Rangeland Vegetation Simulator (RVS).

Citation

Reeves, Matt; Frid, Leonardo. 2016. The Rangeland Vegetation Simulator: A user-driven system for quantifying production, succession, disturbance and fuels in non-forest environments. In: Iwaasa, Alan; Lardner, H. A. (Bart); Schellenberg, Mike; Willms, Walter; Larson, Kathy, eds. Proceedings of the 10th International Rangelands Congress: The Future Management of Grazing and Wild Lands in a High-Tech World; 16-22 July, 2016; Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. The International Rangeland Congress. p. 1062-1063.