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Historical Fire Regimes in Montane Forests of Jasper National Park, Canada
Presented by Raphael D CHAVARDES on 15 May 2013 from 18:00 to 21:00
Type: Poster Presentation
Session: Poster Session + Reception
Board #: 14
In montane forests of Jasper National Park, Canada, 20th century land use altered fire frequency and resulted in changes to forest structure and composition that render low and high elevation forests more similar. We tested whether historical fires in Jasper included high and moderate severity fires comprising a mixed-severity fire regime. Cross-dated, annually-resolved fire-scar records were combined with stand age structure for a network of sites in the montane forests to estimate past fire frequency and severity. Effects of historic fires on contemporary forest dynamics were inferred from stand density, structure and composition. At 19 of the 29 sites, the presence of fire scars and cohorts indicate mixed-severity fires. Moreover, many sites include shade-tolerant white spruce in the understory even at lower elevations. Our research results improve understanding of fire severity and frequency, enabling ecosystem management based on historic range of variation to increase forest resilience to climate change.
Room: Salon E
- Raphael D CHAVARDES Department of Forest Sciences, University of British Columbia