Fire, Climate, and Forests
Faculty and Post-Doctoral Researchers
Danielle M. Klass (B.S.)Alumni
George (Joe) Smithson (B.S.)
Wanda Bruhns, M.F., Peace Corps Master International (2013). Measuring reforestation success in the Sierra Gordo Guanajuato Biosphere Reserve, Mexico.
- Kathryn Ireland, Ph.D. (2013). Response of fire regimes and ponderosa pine and aspen forest communities to climate, Arizona.
- Kristen L. Shive, M.S. (2011). Pre-fire treatments have persistent effects on post-fire plant communities
Alicia Azpeleta Tarancón, Máster en Gestión y Restauración del Medio Natural, Universidad de Alicante, Spain (co-tutor w/ Jordi Cortina, 2012). Simulando trayectorias de sucesión post-incendio bajo alternativas de clima y gestión: caso de estudio Bosque Nacional de Apache-Sitgreaves, Arizona
- Valerie Kurth, Ph.D. (2011). Long-term effects of stand-replacing wildfires on nutrient
cycling and decomposition in southwestern ponderosa pine forests.
- Larissa Yocom, Ph.D. (2011). Influence of climate and local factors on fire in high-elevation
forests of Mexico.
- Citlali Cortés Moñtano, Ph.D. (2011). The treasure of the Sierra Madre: ecology
of old-growth forests in Chihuahua, México.
- Kristen Honig, M.S. (2010). Simulating the effects of climate change and ecological
restoration on wildfire behavior in southwestern ponderosa pine forests.
- Corinne Diggins, M.S. (2010). Modeling forest change, bird communities, and management
alternatives on a restored ponderosa pine ecosystem.
- Donna Peppin, M.S. (2009). Evidence-based review of seeding in post-fire rehabilitation
and native plant market feasibility.
- Ken Stella, M.S. (2009). Effects and effectiveness of seeding following high-severity
wildfire in northern Arizona ponderosa pine forests.
- Matt Tuten (Geography, 2008). Comparing ecological restoration and northern goshawk
management guidelines treatments in a southwestern ponderosa pine forest.
- Amanda Kuenzi, M.S. (2006). Pre-fire treatment effects and understory plant community
response on the Rodeo-Chediski fire, Arizona.
- John Paul Roccaforte, M.S. (2005). Monitoring landscape-scale forest structure and
fire behavior changes following ponderosa pine restoration treatments.
- M. David Passovoy, M.S. (2005). Snag and woody debris dynamics following severe
wildfires in northern Arizona ponderosa pine forests.
- Ethan Barnes, M.S. (2005). Smoke, risk, and intergenerational equity in Flagstaff,
Arizona’s wildland-urban interface.
- Barb Strom, M.S. (2005). Pre-fire treatment effects and post-fire forest dynamics
on the Rodeo-Chediski burn area, Arizona.
- Zak Meier, M.S. (Environmental Science and Policy, 2005).
- Maurice Huynh, M.F. (2005). Assessment of various methods of canopy cover estimation
that yield accurate results with field repeatability.
- Joseph Crouse, M.S. (2005). Fuels and fire behavior modeling using remotely sensed
data on the San Francisco Peaks, Arizona.
- Megan (Van Horne) Date, M.S. (2005). Comparing methods of reconstructing fire history
using fire scars in a southwestern ponderosa pine forest.
- Rita Reisor Dodge, M.S. (2004). Dalmation toadflax (Linaria damatica) response to
wildfire and native species regeneration in ponderosa pine forest.
- Allison Cocke, M.S. (2004). Fire exclusion and burn severity on the San Francisco
- Marta Fisher, M.S. (2004). Plant and plant-mycorrhizal interactions across an elevation
gradient on the San Francisco Peaks.
- Ann Roberts, M.S. ( 2003). Ponderosa pine restoration treatment effects on pinyon
mice and deer mice in northwestern Arizona.
- Cara (Gildar) MacMillan, M.S. (2002). Plant community and arbuscular mycorrhizal
dynamics have implications for determining ponderosa pine reference conditions.
- Adrien Elseroad, M.S. (2001). Forest roads in northern Arizona: recovery after closure
and revegetation techniques.
Northwest view from Prospect Point, Hualapai tribal lands
Amanda B. Stan, Peter Z. Fulé, Kathryn B. Ireland
Compared with public lands, tribal lands in the southwestern
US have received limited research attention. As a result, tribal societies and resources
are in a vulnerable position as climate warms and large knowledge gaps exist that
will adversely affect people’s ability to plan for changes to ecosystems across
the region as a whole. This project seeks to link research on forest fire ecology
with educational and extension activities to assist the Hualapai Tribe (Arizona)
in adapting and managing forest ecosystems on their lands in the changing environment
of the coming decades.
USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
Fire, Climate, and Forest Structure in Northern MexicoRead more
Fire-scarred pine tree in Chihuahua,
Peter Z. Fulé, Larissa L. Yocom, Citlali Cortés Montaño, Isaac
Bickford, Christen Irby, Joe Smithson, Donald A. Falk (U. Arizona), Peter M. Brown
(Rocky Mountain Tree-Ring Research), José Villanueva (Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones
Forestales, Argícolas, y Pecuarias), Eladio Cornejo (Universidad Autónoma Agraria
Are fire regimes regulated from the top down, by continental-scale
climatic phenomena, or from the bottom up, by site-specific fuel, topography, and
ignition characteristics? We are developing new networks of long fire and climate
chronologies together with fuel dynamics in northern Mexico, incorporating a subset
of unique relict sites where fire regimes and forest structures are least perturbed
by human impacts over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The research benefits
both Mexico and the US.
National Science Foundation.
Successional trajectories after high-severity wildfire
Fire severity image of the Rodeo-Chediski fire
Kristen L. Shive, Peter Z. Fulé, Carolyn Hull Sieg (Rocky
Mountain Research Station)
In 2002, the Rodeo-Chediski fire burned 189,658 ha (468,638
acres) in northeastern Arizona. Although the fire was severe, its effects were mitigated
in areas that had received pre-fire fuels reduction treatments. We are studying
post-fire changes in plant communities, forest structure, and fuels over time, including
simulation modeling of future conditions under climate change. Partners in the project
include the White Mountain Apache Tribe and the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests.
USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station; Joint Fire
Peace Corps Master’s International
Peace Corps Volunteers in the Master´s International
Wanda Bruhns, Rachel SheridanDescription:
The Peace Corps Master's International Program combines graduate
study with Peace Corps Volunteer service. Wanda Bruhns is serving with the Reserva
de la Biósfera Sierra Gorda, Guanajuato. Rachel Sheridan is serving in conservation
and restoration of degraded lands with the Comisión Nacional Forestal in Tlaxcala.
U.S. Peace Corps
Vegetation and Fire Regime Response to Climate in Northern ArizonaRead more
Katie Ireland in burned aspen stand, Kaibab N.F.
Kathryn B. Ireland, Peter Z. Fulé, Amanda B. Stan, Margaret
M. Moore, Thomas J. Zegler, Robert E. Keane (Rocky Mountain Research Station)
Vegetation patterns and their changes over time are shaped both
by physical factors, such as climate and soils, and patterns of disturbance. As
climate change progresses, vegetation patterns are expected to shift as species
attempt to respond to the changing geographic location of the climatic conditions
to which they are adapted. Because the frequency and severity of fire is influenced
by plant species composition and patterns of fuel accumulation, shifts in vegetation
patterns will interact with climatic changes to modify future fire regimes. This
project is focused on understanding historical links between climatic conditions,
forest fires, and forest communities and applying the knowledge gained from studying
these links to model how changing climatic conditions are likely to affect both
forests and wildfires in the future.
Science Foundation Arizona; Northern Arizona University’s School
of Forestry Mission Research program (McIntire-Stennis); USDA Forest Service
Fire regimes and climate in Mediterranean forests (Spain and Greece)Read more
Old Pinus nigra forest on Mt. Taygetos, Greece
Peter Z. Fulé, Ramón Vallejo (Universitat de Barcelona), Margarita
Arianoutsou, Anastasia Christopoulous, Dimitris Sarris (National and Kapodistrian
University of Athens)
Nations of the Mediterranean basin have experienced increasingly
large and severe forest fires, similar to patterns seen elsewhere in Europe and
in dry forests worldwide. We are working to develop a network of fire-climate sites
using standardized and rigorous procedures to test hypotheses about climate drivers
of fire and to measure changes in fire regimes over time. Findings will be useful
for developing strategies to conserve native forests in the face of changing climate,
and reduce the damage of severe wildfires
Forest fires under climate, social and economic changes in Europe,
the Mediterranean and other fire-affected areas of the world (FUME), Seventh Framework
Programme, European Union.
High-elevation fire regimes, Grand Canyon National ParkRead more
Grand Canyon fire (photo D. Binkley)
Larissa L. Yocom, Peter Z. Fulé (NAU); Windy Bunn, Eric Gdula
(Grand Canyon National Park)
We are developing a quantitative assessment of the historical
fire regime in high-elevation forests of Grand Canyon´s North Rim using a combination
of existing data and efficient, selective collection of new data to answer the following
research questions: (1) What is the best estimate of historic high-severity patch
sizes, spatial arrangement, and temporal arrangement of fire dates in high elevation
forests on the North Rim? (2) What is the current high-severity patch size distribution?
(3) Under what climate and fire weather conditions were, and are, high-severity
patches generated? (4) What management strategies would best promote the heterogeneity
characteristic of this system while also promoting resiliency into the future
National Park Service, Colorado Plateau Cooperative Ecosystem Studies
Landscape-scale Response to Changing Climate and Fire Regimes on the Kaibab PlateauRead more
LANDSAT image of the Kaibab Plateau
and Grand Canyon, Northern Arizona
(Source: Google Earth)
William T. Flatley, Peter Z. Fulé, Larissa L. Yocom, Andrew J. Sánchez Meador, Amanda B. Stan
The Kaibab Plateau of northern Arizona ranges in elevation from 1800 to 2800 meters. This elevation-climate gradient supports a diversity of forest community types including: pinyon-juniper, ponderosa pine, mixed conifer, aspen and spruce-fir. Shifting patterns of fire disturbance and land use history have imparted additional variability to forest composition and structure on the plateau. Our objective is to use this contemporary forest mosaic as a basis for simulation modeling of landscape-scale forest response to changing climate and fire regimes. We are particularly interested in identifying 1) key landscape processes that will drive future forest change and 2) management strategies that might aid in the conservation of threatened communities.
Northern Arizona University Technology and Research Initiative Fund, National Park Service, Colorado Plateau Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Unit