News Archive

Forty years in forestry earns NAU Regents’ professor prestigious award

Over four decades of study, forestry professor and restoration ecologist Wally Covington has seen trees compete for water and sunlight, struggle with insects and disease, turn to ash in wildfires. He has also seen the future in the past—what a forest should look like through what it used to look
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Octocopter drone an NAU first

The octocopter is the newest contributor to Sankey’s collection of satellite and airplane-based data. The Northern Arizona University professor’s research focuses on analyzing images collected by remote imaging sensors on various aerial devices in order to measure the effects of human and natural
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Mixed-conifer forests at risk for high-severity wildfire

Northern Arizona University scientists are calling for accelerated restoration of mixed-conifer forests in a paper published this month in Forest Ecology and Management. These landscapes are at extreme risk for uncharacteristic wildfire because of tree density, fire suppression and warmer
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NAU researcher finds forest treatment contributes to increased snowpack

After analyzing thousands of images from satellites and airplane-flown sensors, Teki Sankey, Northern Arizona University ecologist and remote sensing scientist, concluded that forest thinning increases snow accumulations on the ground and allows snow to linger during the spring melt. The combined
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Science, collaboration in action

This week, we celebrate the signing of the Flagstaff Watershed Protection Project‘s final Record of Decision by the U.S. Forest Service, which clears a total of 8,669 acres for treatment through mechanical thinning, hand thinning and prescribed burning. The watershed project is a monumental event
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SRP Healthy Forests Conference

Water has been a source of news lately, from the discovery of water on Mars to the exacerbated droughts in California. Concern about water is nothing new to us in our desert state of Arizona, but not everyone knows to be concerned about the one thing that directly impacts our water quality: our
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Forest managers embrace the benefits of fire

As wildfires decimate communities and char landscapes in California and across the Northwest this year, the story of fire in northern Arizona has been almost completely the opposite.
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As Fires Grow, a New Landscape Appears in the West

NEAR COCHITI CANYON, N.M. — The hills here are beautiful, a rolling, green landscape of grasses and shrubs under a late-summer sky. But it is starkly different from what was here before: vast forests of ponderosa pine. The repeated blazes that devastated the trees were caused by simple things: an
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The Science Behind 4FRI: Forest Restoration In Arizona

While held up by politics and economics, the nation’s largest forest thinning project is founded on partnerships and sound science. Even though it is well behind schedule, restoration of southwestern forests may be one of the region's smartest investments.
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Working Together to Restore the Colorado Front Range - See more at:

It started with a call from a concerned landowner living on Pine Country Lane, nestled in the foothills just west of Denver. The landscape spread out before them was scarred from previous high-severity fires, the homeowners told their local Conservation District. Their home was sitting at the top
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