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Recent Publications

The Science Framework is part of an unprecedented conservation effort underway across 11 States in the western United States to address threats to sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystems and the species that depend on them. Sagebrush ecosystems provide a large diversity of habitats and support more than 350 species of vertebrates (Suring et al. 2005).
Scientists and managers initiated a collaborative process to assist the Rio Grande National Forest (RGNF) with bringing climate change information into its Forest Planning Process. The first objective of the collaborative, 2-day workshop was to present and discuss in a workshop format the salient climate change science for the RGNF landscape, in terms of projections, impacts, and vulnerabilities.
We excavated the root systems of Pinus ponderosa trees growing on a steeply sloped, volcanic ash-influenced soil in the northern Rocky Mountains of the United States to assess their functional coarse-root traits and root system architecture. Trees, outplanted as one-year-old seedlings from a container nursery, were in their 32nd growing season on the site.
Ruil (Nothofagus alessandrii) is an endangered keystone species from the Mediterranean climate zone of Chile. Ruil’s fragile state of conservation urges development of restoration programs, but specific protocols for nursery production and field establishment that ensure plant survival are largely unknown.
Context: Fire regimes in many dry forests of western North America are substantially different from historical conditions, and there is concern about the ability of these forests to recover following severe wildfire. Fire refugia, unburned or low-severity burned patches where trees survived fire, may serve as essential propagule sources that enable forest regeneration.
Altered fire regimes can drive major and enduring compositional shifts or losses of forest ecosystems. In western North America, ponderosa pine and dry mixed-conifer forest types appear increasingly vulnerable to uncharacteristically extensive, high-severity wildfire.
Satellite-derived spectral indices such as the relativized burn ratio (RBR) allow fire severity maps to be produced in a relatively straightforward manner across multiple fires and broad spatial extents. These indices often have strong relationships with field-based measurements of fire severity, thereby justifying their widespread use in management and science.
Human activities threaten the effectiveness of protected areas (PAs) in achieving their conservation goals across the globe. In this study, we contrast the influence of human and macro-environmental factors driving fire activity inside and outside PAs.
Wildland fire is an understudied yet highly important disturbance agent on the Indian subcontinent. In particular, there is uncertainty regarding the degree to which annual climate variation influences inter-annual variability in fire activity. In this study, we evaluate wildland fire at two complementary spatial scales in the southern portion of the Western Ghats mountain range (hereafter ‘Western Ghats’) in India.
NASA’s Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) mission will collect waveform lidar data at a dense sample of ~25 m footprints along ground tracks paralleling the orbit of the International Space Station (ISS). GEDI’s primary science deliverable will be a 1 km grid of estimated mean aboveground biomass density (Mg ha-1), covering the latitudes overflown by ISS (51.6 ° S to 51.6 ° N).

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