How vegetation recovery and fuel conditions in past fires influences fuels and future fire management in five western US ecosystems

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Mixed severity wildfires burn large areas in western North America forest ecosystems in most years and this is expected to continue or increase with climate change. Little is understood about vegetation recovery and changing fuel conditions more than a decade post-fire because it exceeds the duration of most studies of fire effects. We measured plant species composition, conifer seedling regeneration, fuel loads, and ground cover at 15 wildfires that burned 9-15 years previous in five western U.S. vegetation types distributed across eight states including Alaska.

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