Disentangling the effects of multiple fires on spatially interspersed sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) communities

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Big sagebrush and scabland sagebrush communities responded uniquely to multiple fires, due to different fuel loadings, fire severities, succession and invasion dynamics. Big sagebrush experienced nearly complete shrub loss and conversion from exotic invaded‐shrubland to exotic annual grassland after only one fire. In contrast, scabland sagebrush retained a minor shrub component and higher relative cover of native herbaceous species, even after three fires. Both communities retained cover of native perennial grasses, including shallow‐ and deep‐rooted species, likely reflecting decreasing fire intensity with number of times burned.

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