Fire Science News for the Lake States Region - December 2017

In This Issue

Consortium Staff
Jack McGowan-Stinski
Program Manager

Administrative Committee
The Ohio State University
Eric Toman, PI
David Hix, Co-PI
Michigan State University
Jessica Miesel, Co-PI 
Wayne State University
Dan Kashian, Co-PI 
Greg Corace, Co-PI
USFS Northern Research
Brian Palik, Co-PI
Randy Kolka, Co-PI
Brian Sturtevant, Co-PI
University of Idaho
Charles Goebel, Co-PI

Advisory Committee

Jim Barnier, WDNR
Marty Casselius, BIA
Paul Charland, USFWS
BJ Glesener, MN DNR
Steve Goldman, USFS
Matt Graeve, TNC
Andy Henriksen, NRCS
Michele Richards MI NG
Glenn Palmgren, MI DNR
Aaron Stacey, OMNR
Scott Weyenberg, NPS

December 2017:
Volume 8, Issue 12

Two Webinars in January 2018

First Webinar in January

Thursday, January 18, 2018 at 2 PM Eastern/ 1 PM Central

Prescribed fire in pine stands, tree mortality and the response of insects and pathogens.

Steve Katovich, Ph.D.
Forest Entomologist
USDA Forest Service
Forest Health Protection

Prescribed fire in pine stands, tree mortality and the response of insects and pathogens: Fire injury can kill older pine trees outright, creating breeding material for bark and wood boring beetles. Fire can also injure needles and wound portions of stems and major roots, resulting in stressed or damaged trees that are not only highly susceptible to insect or pathogen invasion but may also be highly attractive to some insects. Dead roots and patches of damaged bark, cambium and phloem tissue may impact tree health well into the future.

Prescribed burns in both red and white pine stands in northern Minnesota have become more common over the last decade. Some of these fires have resulted in noticeable pockets of dead pine trees with some of the tree mortality lingering for several years as insect and pathogen populations utilize damaged trees. This presentation will outline the role of insects and pathogens following a fire in a northern Minnesota pine stand and touch on some common sense practices that should limit tree mortality.
(No registration or passcode needed – please choose “Guest Login” and type in your First and Last name)

More Information on this Webinar
Second Webinar in January

Thursday, January 25, 2018 at 11 AM Eastern/ 10 AM Central 

Webinar on our three 2017 LSFSC “Intern Program” funding recipients:
  1 - Prescribed burning to improve management for brushland-dependent species.
Collaborating Partners
Dr. Rebecca Montgomery - University of Minnesota
Dr. Lee Frelich - The University of Minnesota Center for Forest Ecology
Lindsey Shartell - Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
Charlotte Roy - Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

Summary: Lowland brushlands in Minnesota are disturbance-dependent ecosystems that provide habitat for 80 wildlife species on the MN DNR Species in Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN) list, nearly half of which are birds. Historically, burns occurred during spring, summer, and fall months, resulting in a characteristic patchy landscape. Current management using prescribed burns limits burning to spring. We are exploring whether burning during summer and fall seasons could benefit different species and help managers meet their goals of reducing brush and maintaining open habitat. The summer intern conducted surveys of breeding birds (point counts) and vegetation (fixed radius plots). In this webinar, I present early results on avian community diversity in lowland brush and compare data before and after burns for bird point counts and vegetation.

2 - Leveraging research and monitoring networks to inform management of at-risk species in the globally rare Pine Barrens ecosystem.
Ryan Raschke - Northland College
Collaborating Partners
Dr. Christel Kern - USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station
Brian Heeringa - USDA Forest Service, Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest
Dr. Sarah Johnson - Northland College

Summary: As evidence for the role of Lepidopteran as indicators of ecosystem health has emerged, resource managers have begun to develop strategies to monitor and manage for moths and butterflies. For instance, the Moquah Pine Barrens of Chequamegon Nicolet National Forest (CNNF) in northern Wisconsin is managed for a range of ecosystem values.  Chryxus Arctic (Oeneis chryxus strigillosa) is one of the indicators of the Moquah Pine Barrens habitat quality and a Regional Forester’s Sensitive Species (RFSS).  Yet, specific management strategies for Chryxus Arctic are not well understood in the region. Thus, we conducted a literature review of O.c. strigulosa in the Great Lakes region and of relevant studies of western subspecies. Our review reveals critical knowledge gaps for the Lake States region, limiting development of appropriate monitoring and conservation strategies. Based on current understanding of food, nectar sources, and habitat requirements, we are developing an index of habitat suitability for O.c. strigulosa, using data from Forest Service research and monitoring databases. By pairing this information with known population occurrences of Chryxus within the Pine Barrens habitat, we aim to provide managers the necessary tools to improve detection, management, and habitat suitability for this rare butterfly.

3 - Reading the rings of red pine to investigate mechanisms of the historic fire regime at Cloquet, Minnesota.
Adam Donaldson - University of Wisconsin-Platteville
Collaborating Partners
Kyle Gill - University of Minnesota Cloquet Forestry Center
Dr. Evan Larson - University of Wisconsin-Platteville

Summary: The past dynamics and drivers of fire are critical to the story told by today’s trees and should inform forest management decisions. For this project, we sampled a direct physical record of pre-European settlement forest fire located at the University of Minnesota’s Cloquet Forestry Center (CFC). Our goal was to create a more spatially and temporally comprehensive understanding of the historical role of fire in the forests of CFC. We sampled 80 fire-scarred red pine stumps, snags, and trees that collectively contained 410 individual fire scars. Tree-ring analysis of these samples produced a fire history spanning the years 1689 to 2017. The record includes 54 distinct fire years with a mean fire return interval (MFRI) of 6 years, with preliminary fire-climate analyses indicating widespread fires occurred during years of regional drought. We analyzed locational information of the fire-scarred samples to determine a coarse estimate of area burned and to explore the spatial dynamics of fire across the relatively contiguous landscape of CFC. Modern fire atlas data for CFC included perimeters of 14 fires that burned during nine fire years from 1910–1932, an MFRI of 3 years. Eleven of these fires were anthropogenic in origin, clearly depicting a recent fire regime influenced by people. Periods of similar fire frequency earlier in the record indicate humans have burned for centuries. We explored historical maps and records to determine the past proximity of human settlements to the study area and human influences on the historical fire regime of CFC.
(No registration or passcode needed – please choose “Guest Login” and type in your First and Last name)

More Information on this Webinar

Two Fire Workshops in Michigan and Wisconsin

4th Annual Burning Issues Workshop 2018
Michigan Prescribed Fire Council Annual Meeting

February 6 and 7, 2018

“Breaking Burning Barriers”
Over the two days we will explore topic areas that are relevant across the State of Michigan and the Upper Midwest, and have interactive opportunities such as panel discussions and a world café. These discussions and sessions are planned with and for the diverse community interacting around fire-related issues, and seek to build the understanding and communication to support further work toward collaborative solutions.

The four topic areas we will cover over the 2-day workshop include:
1.    Managing for Wildlife in Fire-dependent Ecosystems
•    Presenters and Panel include: Dr. Gary Roloff (Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University), Dr. John Shuey (Director of Conservation Science, The Nature Conservancy, Indiana Field Office), and Tracy Melvin (Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University)
2.    Managing Oak Ecosystems with Fire
•    Overview Presentation on Managing Oak Ecosystems with Fire in the Eastern U.S. by Daniel C. Dey, PhD, Research Forester, Project Leader, U.S. Forest Service, Northern Research Station
•    Panel Discussion on the MI DNR’s approach to Oaks and Fire Management by Jesse Bramer, Mark Sargent, and Paul Rogers
3.    Managing Fire-Dependent Systems with Invasive Species Considerations
•    Presenters and Panel include Dr. Jessica Miesel (Department of Plant, Soil and Microbial Sciences, Michigan State University) and Glenn Palmgren (MI Department of Natural Resources)
4.    Managing a Burn Program: Exploring the risks, barriers, and opportunities in developing and sustaining a burn program
•    Presenters and Panel include Steve Goldman (Assistant Director Fuels Program, USDA Forest Service, Eastern Regional Office) and Trent Wickman (Air Resource Specialist - MN,WI,MI, USDA Forest Service, Eastern Regional Office)
•    World Café interactive session

NOTE: For Federal Employees, this Workshop falls under the definition of a training, which means no meetings management is necessary. Attendees will simply need approval from a supervisor/budget manager to pay the registration fee. Please see the Burning Issues webpage which has the excerpt defining training.

Location: Fort Custer National Training Center (FCTC), 1109 Denso Rd, Battle Creek, MI 49037 (42.329729, -85.287916)

Registration: Thanks to Fort Custer Training Center (FCTC) we are able to keep costs low with a reasonable registration fee (includes lunch, snacks and coffee both days): Regular registration is $65 and a Reduced Rate registration for students/volunteers/private landowners is $35. Please contact Jack McGowan-Stinski to get the reduced rate Promo code; reduced rate is limited quantity.


Lodging:  Available at FCTC at a maximum rate of $50/night. Other lodging options are located in Kalamazoo, MI.  Note: Rooms at FCTC are semi-private; a single twin bed with a shared bathroom (toilet and shower) with one adjacent room. Call 269.731.6126 to reserve your lodging.

2nd Annual Wisconsin Winter Fire Workshop 

When: February 16, 2018 - 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM; Check-in begins at 8:00 AM.

Where: The 2017 Wisconsin Winter Workshop will be held on the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point campus, Dreyfus University Center, Stevens Point, WI

There are two ways to be alerted when registration opens:
1) enter your email address on this event notification form
2) check out the event on the TPOS Facebook page and select "Interested" or "Going"

The Workshop is designed for sharing multiple perspectives on wildland fire management:
  • plenary session - land managers and researchers will share their experiences with seasonality of fire and fire effects, including updates on the latest prescribed fire research
  • keynote speaker Steve Miller will share his diverse experiences with fire - as a land manager, prescribed burn boss, wildland firefighter, and NWCG trainer
  • short talks will provide updates from around the state (share your updates on research, prescribed fire, or wildfire planning/response)
  • Dr. Ron Masters will present insights from his 40 year career spanning the roles of land manager, researcher, and professor
  • a 1 hour organized networking opportunity where undergraduate and graduate students can meet natural resource professionals to learn about career paths into careers with fire management responsibilities.
  • Anyone interested in getting involved with the Wisconsin Prescribed Fire Council will have an opportunity to hear about the council's work and connect with current members, as well.
You can follow updates at this webpage

Two Smoke TOOLS Workshops in Michigan and Minnesota

 Overview of the Smoke TOOLS Workshops:
Smoke Management and Smoke hazards are one of the most important things to plan for and manage when doing a prescribed burn, or to consider during any wildfire suppression. This one-day workshop has been designed to provide hands-on experience with new, easy-to-use, online tools, and is designed for anybody working in wildland fire – a good introductory workshop for those who have not had much smoke modeling and management exposure, or as an excellent refresher for those who have had another smoke course. Bring example burns/ burn units from your home area, and a laptop, and we will work on evaluating smoke issues with these burns; if you do not have a burn unit in mind we will provide examples for you.

Instructor: Trent Wickman, Air Resource Specialist for MI-MN-WI, Eastern Regional Office,    
USDA - Forest Service.

Michigan Offering of Smoke TOOLS:
Monday, February 5, 2018
Where: Kalamazoo Nature Center, 7000 N Westnedge Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49009

Registration: $35, which includes lunch
Registration Link will be available soon; check this website for more information and for the detailed agenda!
Minnesota Offering of Smoke TOOLS:
When: Tuesday, March 13, 2018
Where: MN Interagency Fire Center, Grand Rapids, MN
Cost: $20 SFEC members, $40 others; Lunch will not be provided
To Register and for more information go to this website

2018 Request for Proposals for LSFSC Intern Funding

The Lake States Fire Science Consortium (LSFSC) is committed to ensuring that the ‘best available science’ is available for planning and managing northern fire-dependent ecosystems of the Lake States.  Where there are current gaps in the science, the goal of the LSFSC is to assist in filling those gaps so that science informs practice and vice-versa.  Unfortunately, for many local fire management issues, there are few resources available to bring managers and scientists together to solve these important issues.

In an effort to enhance the opportunities for managers and scientists to work together, and to expose future professionals to opportunities of management and research collaborations, the LSFSC requests proposals to fund research internships that address relevant fire science and management issues associated with northern fire-dependent ecosystems of the Lake States region (See our
Ecosystems page for a description of fire-dependent ecosystems that are the focus of the Lake States Fire Science Consortium). Proposals must be developed by joint manager-scientist teams (i.e. both must be listed as co-PIs and equally contribute to proposal development) and outline how the research internship will address a critical need that will help improve management of fire-dependent ecosystems locally.     

The LSFSC anticipates awarding several $4,000 research internship awards.  It is expected that 100% of the funds should go to support the undergraduate internship experience (preferably for salary though a limited amount of funds may be used to purchase materials and supplies needed to complete the project - funds should not be used as a supplement or summer salary for graduate students). All proposals must be submitted by 5:00 PM Eastern / 4:00 PM Central on Monday, January 29, 2018 by email to There will be no exceptions to this closing date and time. 

Proposals should be concise and no longer than four (4) pages in length. It is anticipated that the projects will last no longer than three to six months. Upon completion of the project a brief final report, and a webinar presentation, will be required. Proposals that do not meet all requirements will not be considered for funding (see Proposal Requirements below). Each proposal will be reviewed and its merits evaluated in the context of specific goals, nature of the collaborative arrangement, and potential for the collaborative relationship to continue into the future. 

Proposal Requirements
Principal Investigator Team: Names and Affiliations of Research and Management Team 
  1. Overview
  • Clearly articulate the nature of the fire science and/or fire management issue, and how the scientist and manager team came together to address this issue
  • Describe the significance of the issue locally and to the region
  1. Project justification and Expected benefits
  • Articulate how the proposed internship will address one or each of the following:
    • facilitate development of a new or emerging cooperative project between research and management in the area of fire ecology and/or application, or
    • create a unique training experience for the intern that will enable that person to more easily work across traditional boundaries impeding integration of fire research and management in the Lake States region
  1. Plan of action
  • Describe the specific research questions or objectives and methods
  • Specifically describe how the undergraduate intern will help advance this plan
  • Briefly describe how the undergraduate intern will integrate with both scientists and managers as part of the project
  1. Schedule
  • Specifically outline deliverables and a time frame for their completion
  1. Future plans
  • Describe how the relationship supported by this internship will contribute to an ongoing collaboration between the scientist and manager team beyond the funding period
  1. Budget
  • Provide an itemized budget for the project
  • Most funding should support the undergraduate intern; however, a small portion of the budget can be used to purchase materials and supplies that support the research project.  Travel and indirect costs will not be supported
To view examples of the successful internship awards in 2013-2017, please see our webinar archive and recordings for December 19, 2013; December 18, 2014; November 19, 2015; November 17, 2016Please note that the required sections have been updated for this year’s announcement and prior proposals may not include each of the required sections.
Questions should be directed to:
Eric Toman, LSFSC Program Director (; 614-292-7313)

Jack McGowan-Stinski, LSFSC Program Manager (; 989-287-1734)  

Fire Trainings – 2nd Annual Prescribed Fire Training Exchange in Wisconsin (WI-TREX)

When: April 9 - 25, 2018
The Objective of the 16 day TREX program in Wisconsin is to facilitate peer-to-peer, experiential learning for prescribed fire professionals and others interested in advancing their knowledge and tool-set in restoring fire-adapted landscapes. Participants will engage in a unique program blending maximum field prescribed burning experience with a flexible curriculum of classroom instruction on foundational topics for prescribed fire practitioners. Participants will have the opportunity to complete portions of their National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) approved prescribed fire task books.

Contact Eric Mark for questions

Read Training Announcement for additional details
Registration Form

Conferences-Workshops-Field Trips in the Region

2018 Stewardship Network Conference
Science, Practice & Art of Restoring Native Ecosystems Conference
January 12 – 13, 2018
East Lansing, MI at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center

Midwest Fish & Wildlife Conference
January 28-31, 2018
Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Smoke TOOLS Workshop 2018 Michigan
February 5, 2018
Kalamazoo Nature Center, Kalamazoo, MI

REGISTRATION is OPEN for 4th Annual Burning Issues Workshop 2018 and Michigan Prescribed Fire Council Annual Meeting
February 6-7, 2018
Fort Custer Training Center, Augusta, MI

Registration link

SAVE-the-DATE for the 2nd Annual WI Winter Fire Workshop
February 16, 2018
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

Registration will open soon!

Smoke TOOLS Workshop 2018 Minnesota
March 13, 2018
MN Interagency Fire Center, Grand Rapids, MN
Midwest/Great Lakes Chapter of the Society for Ecological Restoration Annual Meeting
April 20-22, 2018
Stevens Point, Wisconsin

Upper Midwest Invasive Species Conference
October 15-18, 2018
Rochester, Minnesota

Conferences and Workshops in the U.S. 

January 30 - February 1, 2018
Portland, ME

Wildland Urban Interface Conference
February 27 - March 1, 2018
Peppermill Resort
Reno, NV
2nd Annual National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy Workshop
March 26-29, 2018
Peppermill Resort Spa Casino
Reno, NV
The Fire Continuum Conference: Preparing for the Future of Wildland Fire 
May 21-24, 2018 
Missoula, MT

Want to submit an article, post an event or training, or contribute a success story?

Does your agency, organization, or community have a wildland fire science project, event, training, or story you would like to see featured in the Lake States Fire Science Consortium Newsletter? 
Please send submissions to Jack McGowan-Stinski.
Copyright © 2017 Lake States Fire Science Consortium, All rights reserved.
Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp