Fire Science News for the Lake States Region - October 2017

In This Issue

Consortium Staff
Jack McGowan-Stinski
Program Manager

Administrative Committee
The Ohio State University
Charles Goebel, PI
David Hix, Co-PI
Eric Toman, 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

Advisory Committee

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

October 2017:
Volume 8, Issue 10

Fire Science Webinar in November

CanFIRE: predicting fire behaviour and fire effects.

Dr. W.J. (Bill) de Groot
Fire Research Scientist
Natural Resources Canada-Canadian Forest Service

November 16, 2017 at 2 PM Eastern/ 1 PM Central
  • CFFDRS science-management integration model
  • Stand-level, fire behaviour-based model
  • Simulates physical and ecological fire effects
  • Small scale (fire behaviour) to large scale (fire regimes)
  • New fuel consumption equations
  • Dynamic fuel model (fully adjustable)
(No registration or passcode needed – please choose “Guest Login” and type in your First and Last name)

Or copy-and-paste into your browser:
Click HERE for Webpage

Archived LSFSC Webinars

Remember, all of our webinars are archived! You can view the Webinar Recording, or the PDF, of any webinars, including our October 2017 Webinar that kicked off our 2017-2018 Webinar Series - Wildlife implications across snag treatment types in jack pine stands of Upper Michigan.

Recent Prescribed Fire on Apostle Islands National Lakeshore

The National Park Service, in collaboration with the Red Cliff Band, Bad River Band and other Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission member Tribes, conducted a prescribed burn on Stockton Island on October 20th. This was a significant burn – it was the first prescribed fire in the history of the National Lakeshore and, more importantly, a primary focus was to reintroduce the cultural practice of burning to this very unique ecosystem. 

Lowbush Prescribed Burn on the Stockton Island Tombolo Burn Summary
by Damon Panek, Park Ranger/Ojibwe Cultural Specialist

Five acres of the tombolo were burned on Friday the 20th of October. Ignitions started around 1300 and ended around 1730. Apostle Islands, BIA Great Lakes Agency (Red Cliff and Bad River tribal members), and Forest Service personnel helped to complete the burn. PIOs/partners from Apostle Islands, Great Lake Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission, University of Minnesota, and the Fond du Lac band of Ojibwe were also present during the burn.

Ignitions focused on mitigating mortality to red pines while at the same time causing mortality to birch, spruce, and balsam. To achieve that goal a backing fire was ignited in addition to point firing of each red pine to minimize residence time. The dot ignitions interior on each red pine set the pace for ignitions and was coordinated with black line being created along the control line. The entire control line was plumbed with trunk line and laterals.

Fire behavior was low to moderate during the burn. In the more wet areas it was difficult to get the fire to carry. In the dry southern aspect area the fire carried very well. We had very good consumption of 1 and 10 hour fuels but little consumption 100 and 1000 fuels. We did experience some single tree torching of spruce which may have led to some scorching of red pine. We are estimating about 70% of the project area was blackened. 

On Saturday the 21st, 6 people went back out to the unit and mopped up with the focus on red pines that had heat near their roots. On Sunday mop-up was continued to 100%. 

This burn was a huge success. We had the perfect weather window for the re-entry of fire on the tombolo. We had a number of different agencies and tribes on site to pull it off. We had opportunities for APIS staff to experience the entire process from planning to implementation. And, most important to me, we've closed the suppression mentality gap, and utilized the traditional cultural practice of Native peoples to re-establish fire on this unique landscape.

Please also see the article, "Keeping the Fire Alive" about the reintroduction of prescribed fire to Stockton Island. 

Out of the Ashes: 
Birds bring new life to a forest after fire sweeps through.

by Beth Siverhus 
(from an article in the Minnesota Conservation Volunteer Magazine)

Read the full article about the response of birds to the 4,500 acre Palsburg Fire in the Beltrami Island State Forest in northwestern Minnesota.

DNR staff wondered what effect the fire and sudden change in habitat would have on birds. Gretchen Mehmel and Charles Tucker, the manager and assistant manager, respectively, of Red Lake Wildlife Management Area, devised a plan to find out. The study area was perfect due to its large size and accessibility, and the study would be the first in the state to look at avian responses to a fire during the year in which it occurred.

Teeming Life. I began surveying in early June in the lush forest outside the burn. How exhilarating it was to be out in the woods in early summer listening to the songs of warblers, vireos, flycatchers, and sparrows again!

After a few days of point-count surveys outside the burn area, I moved inside the fire's perimeter. I did not expect to document many species here, thinking that the burn area would be a vast wasteland of burnt pines and, in the cutover areas, charred and lifeless prairie. When I got out of the truck at the first designated point inside the burn, my senses were immediately overwhelmed. It was five weeks after the forest fire, and the area was teeming with life. The air had a fresh, earthy aroma tinged with the smoky odor of a lingering campfire. Trees and undergrowth charred coal black contrasted drastically with the bright green of new plant growth springing up from the forest floor.

A northern flicker, breast feathers wet from the morning dew, was foraging hungrily for ants. Soft gray mourning doves strutted through the rubble picking at seeds and insects, heads bobbing. American goldfinches hopped from low branches to the ground and back again, their lemon-yellow feathers glowing in the morning sunshine. Although loggers were working a mere quarter-mile away, territorial male birds seemed oblivious to the noise and were singing their hearts out, as if trying to outdo the loggers' whining saws and rumbling tractor engines. What surprised me most was that they were here at all in this altered landscape, so very different than their breeding grounds last summer.

JFSP Notice of Intent for potential funding FY 18 is still in delay status....

See the Notice of Intent...

Fire Trainings

Jan. 12-14 and Jan. 19-21, 2018
Grand Valley State University
Held at Pierce Cedar Creek Institute, Hastings, MI
Offering fire courses in the next year?
Please send information to Jack McGowan-Stinski so we can post in future newsletters for you.

Conferences-Workshops-Field Trips in the Region

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

Midwest Fish & Wildlife Conference
January 28-31, 2018
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
REGISTRATION is OPEN for 4th Annual Burning Issues Workshop 2018 and Michigan Prescribed Fire Council Annual Meeting
February 6-7, 2018 at Fort Custer Training Center, Augusta, MI
Registration link

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. 

4th Biennial Shortleaf Pine Conference
October 3-5, 2017 at Stockton Seaview Hotel in Galloway, New Jersey

Natural Areas Conference
October 10-12, 2017
Fort Collins, CO.

2017 Conference on Fire Prediction Across Scales
October 23-25, 2017
Columbia University’s Morningside Campus, New York

Oak Symposium: Sustaining Oak Forests in the 21st Century through Science-based Management
October 24-26, 2017 
Knoxville, TN

Future of Fire Workshop
November 6-7, 2017
Chautauqua National Historic Landmark
Boulder, Colorado

SAF National Convention. The Future of Forestry: Meeting Diverse Needs in a Changing World
November 15-19, 2017
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Call for presentations now open!

7th International Fire Ecology & Management Congress 
FireVision 20/20: A 20-Year Reflection and Look into the Future
Held concurrently with the 2nd Applied Fire Science Workshop
Hosted by the Association for Fire Ecology in cooperation with the Southern Fire Exchange
November 28 - December 2, 2017
Orlando, FL
Call for Poster Presentation Abstracts Sept. 15 
Call for Attached Meetings Sept. 15 

Igniting Exchange: Bridging the Gap between Science and Management 
January 30 - February 1, 2018
Portland, ME
Call for Presentations! We invite you to submit an abstract to
by September 15th, 2017.  Click HERE to see the THEMES

Wildland Urban Interface Conference
February 27 - March 1, 2018
Peppermill Resort
Reno, NV

2nd Annual National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy Workshop
Making a Difference: Building Capacity, Improving Preparedness, and Learning From Experience
"Lessons for the Field"
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.
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