Post-fire Environment & Management
This report, developed by the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (WAFWA), Wildfire and Invasive Species Initiative Working Group (Working Group), summarizes the current state of Fire Operations and Fuels management functions in big sagebrush communities. The intent of this report is to illustrate the type and responsiveness of efforts being made. Finally, the report concludes by presenting future options and a series of recommendations that may inform future policy and allocation decisions.
This report synthesizes current information on the effectiveness of post-fire seeding for both soil stabilization and for prevention of the spread of invasive species in rangelands. This information will help federal land managers make more cost-effective decisions on post-fire stabilization and rehabilitation treatments.
In this review of recent literature and meta-analysis of seeding after wildfires, the authors found that seeding has little effect on erosion during the first year after fire and is highly dependent upon initial establishment and coverage of species in successive years. Older seedings were more likely to show reductions in invasives than younger seedings. Seedings with high plant establishment were more likely to reduce invasives than those with low establishment.
This Nature article discusses large, severe fires, climate change, insect outbreaks, and recovery of western forests with USGS scientist, Craig Allen and WERC scientist, Nate Stephenson. on the conversion of forest ecosystems due to climate change and altered fire regimes.
This report describes the framework of how fire and climate change work together to affect forest and fish communities. Learning how to adapt will come from testing, probing, and pushing that framework and then proposing new ideas. The western U.S. defies generalizations, and much learning must necessarily be local in implication. This report serves as a scaffold for that learning. It comprises three primary chapters on physical processes, biological interactions, and management decisions, accompanied by a special section with separately authored papers addressing interactions of fish populations with wildfire.
This is an online guide to legal and institutional resources intended to serve as a starting point to help public and private land managers figure out which considerations are most relevant to the implementation of vegetation treatments in Great Basin states.
This synthesis contains 14 chapters that cover fire and forests, machinery, erosion processes, water yield and quality, soil and riparian impacts, aquatic and landscape effects, and predictive tools and procedures. These chapters provide an overview of our current understanding of the cumulative watershed effects of fuel management in the western United States.
Less than half of the studies reviewed in this synthesis showed reduced sediment movement with seeding. In all vegetation types, successful growth of seeded grasses—enough to affect erosion—appears to displace native or naturalized species, including shrub and tree seedlings. In burned sagebrush range, postfire seeding is frequently used to replace non-native cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) with native or introduced bunchgrasses, with at least short-term success. In recent years, native species and sterile cereal grains have increasingly been used for seeding. Use of aerially applied straw mulch has increased as well, with the risk of weed introduction from contaminated bales.