September 2015 Newsletter

In This Issue


Join Us in Yellowstone - October 1-2 

Join us in Yellowstone for field tours, discussions, networking, and an overnight stay in Gardiner, Montana.

Field tours of forests in Yellowstone will examine fire and vegetation history of the Park and post-fire regeneration and stand conditions following the 1988 fires.

Attendees will visit paleofire sites providing long-term fire histories important in understanding the historical context of the 1988 fires and sites where the 1988 fires changed successional and structural trajectories. 

Field discussions to include -
  • Long-term fire history of the region
  • Fire regime differences across forest and fuel types
  • Ecological recovery following fire
  • Factors influencing different post-fire trajectories
  • Projections for future fire activity
  • Possible ecological consequences related to future fire predictions
  • Sensitivity and complacency of fire regimes in response to climate
For more information and to register, visit the event webpage

Experimental Forests and Demonstration Areas


Check out our new web pages featuring the experimental forests and demonstration areas of the Northern Rockies. These learning and teaching settings have been, and continue to be, critical to the ecological understanding and informed management of the region's ecosystems. 

You can learn about each site's vegetation, unique attributes, management challenges, management history, and browse ongoing and past research products. 

Take a virtual tour of the Experimental Forests.

2015 JFSP Funded Projects in the N. Rockies 

Congratulations to those involved with projects funded by the Joint Fire Science Program in 2015. The following funded projects will be directly relevant to the Northern Rockies - 
  • AIRPACT - Fire for enhanced communication of human health risk with improved wildfire smoke modeling. Joseph K. Vaughan et al., Washington State University
  • US smoke hazard warning system: prototype and enhancements to operational systems. Narasimhan K. Larkin et al., USFS - PNW
  • Multi-scale study of ember production and transport under multiple environmental and fuel conditions. David L. Blunck et al., Oregon State University
  • Impacts of vegetation feedbacks on fire regime regulation under future climate scenarios in Yellowstone. Daniel B. Tinker et al., University of Wyoming
  • Fire history and fire-climate interactions in high-elevation whitebark pine-dominated forests. Alan H. Taylor et al., Pennsylvania State University
  • Changes in forest vegetation and fuel conditions 15 years after prescribed fire. Malcolm P. North et al., USFS - PSW
  • Lick Creek Demonstration-Research Forest: 25-year fire and cutting effects on vegetation and fuels. Christopher R. Keyes et al., University of Montana
For a list of all projects funded in 2015, visit the JFSP website.

2016 JFSP Funding Opportunities 


The Joint Fire Science Program (JFSP) is now accepting proposals for funding for the 2016 fiscal year.

Many of the funding opportunity notices have potential for Northern Rockies region research:
  • Implications of changing ecosystems in selected regions
  • Social and regulatory barriers and facilitators to implementing prescribed fire
  • Effects of fire on tree mortality
  • Post-fire landscape management
  • Ecological and social dimensions of resilient landscapes - A new science initiative
  • Graduate research innovation (GRIN) awards
The JFSP is also seeking Discipline Leads for the Fire and Smoke Model Evaluation Experiment (FASMEE). This project is designed to provide the observational data necessary to evaluate and advance operationally used fire and smoke modeling systems and their underlying scientific understanding. Targeted modeling areas include: 
  • Fuels and consumption
  • Fire behavior and energy
  • Plume development and meteorology
  • Smoke emissions, chemistry, and transport
  • Modeling
To learn more, visit the JFSP website.

2015 Fire Season - Numbers to Date


This table shows the number of fires and acres burned to date for our region as reported by land protection agencies (BIA, BLM, FS, NPS, Idaho Department of Lands, and Montana Counties and Department of Natural Resources and Conservation) and compiled by the Northern Rockies Coordination Center (NRCC).

Numbers for the 10-year average (2005-2014) fire seasons are provided as a comparison for the 2015 fire season to date.

For more information on this fire season, past fire seasons, and current fire incidents, visit the NRCC website

October 6
Mycorrhizae and Fire

October 14
Identifying Resilient Landscapes in the Pacific Northwest

Search the NRFSN Webinar Archive for Northern Rockies-relevant webinar recordings

October 1-2
Fire History and Fire Ecology in Yellowstone

October 22-24
2015 Backyards and Beyond Wildland Fire Education Conference
Myrtle Beach, SC

October 28-29
Restoring the West - Fire Ecology and Restoration in the Interior West
Logan, UT

October 28-31
National Wilderness Workshop
Missoula, MT

November 3-7
Society of American Foresters 2015 National Convention
Baton Rouge, LA

November 16-20
6th International Fire Ecology & Management Congress - Advancing Ecology in Fire Management
San Antonio, TX 

April 11-15
5th International Fire Behavior & Fuels Conference - Wicked Problem, New Solutions: Our Fire, Our Problem
Portland, OR

5th International Fire Behavior and Fuels Conference

Call for presentations/papers opens September 15, 2015

Call for workshops opens October 1, 2015

Draft 2016 Interagency Helicopter Operations Guide

Comments will be accepted through October 30, 2015

Climate & Fire Weather - 
The potential impact of regional climate change on fire weather in the United States

Climate change presents increased potential for very large fires in the contiguous United States

Fire Behavior -
High-resolution infrared thermography for capturing wildland fire behaviour: RxCADRE 2012

Role of buoyant flame dynamics in wildfire spread

Experimental analysis of fire spread across a two-dimensional ridge under wind conditions

Fire Communication & Education -
Strengthening syntheses on fire: increasing their usefulness for managers

Fire Danger -
Relationships between fire danger and the daily number and daily growth of active incidents burning in the Northern Rocky Mountains, USA

Fire and Economics -
Development and application of a probabilistic method for wildfire suppression cost modeling

Operational wildfire suppression modelling: a review evaluating development, state of the art and future directions

The economic benefit of localised, short-term, wildfire-potential information

Fire Effects -
Biomass and fire dynamics in a temperate forest-grassland mosaic: Integrating multi-species herbivory, climate, and fire with the FireBGCv2/GrazeBGC system

Fire enhances whitebark pine seedling establishment, survival, and growth

Fire, fuels, and streams: the effects and effectiveness of riparian treatments

Impacts of fire on snowshoe hares in Glacier National Park, Montana, USA

The effects of burn entry and burn severity on ponderosa pine and mixed conifer forests in Grand Canyon National Park

Too hot to trot? Evaluating the effects of wildfire on patterns of occupancy and abundance for a climate-sensitive habitat specialist

Vegetation response to burn severity, native grass seeding, and salvage logging

Fire and People -
Anthropogenic effects of global mean fire size

Catching fire? Social interactions, beliefs, and wildfire risk mitigation behaviors

Categorizing the social context of the wildland urban interface: Adaptive capacity for wildfire and community "archetypes"

Effect of fire prevention programs on accidental and incendiary wildfires on tribal lands in the United States

Rebuilding and new housing development after fire

Understanding gaps between the risk perceptions of wildland-urban interface (WUI) residents and wildfire professionals

What information do people use, trust, and find useful during a disaster? Evidence from five large wildfires

Fire Policy -
Negative consequences of positive feedbacks in US wildfire management

Wildland fire management futures: insights from a foresight panel

Fire Records -
Sources and implications of bias and uncertainty in a century of US wildfire activity data

Fuels -
Relating fuel loads to overstorey structure and composition in a fire-excluded Sierra Nevada mixed conifer forest

Management / Planning -
Forest Service Strategic Plan: FY 2015-2020

Local ecological knowledge and fire management: what does the public understand?

Principles of effective USA federal fire management plans

Results from the 2014 National Wilderness Manager Survey

Post-fire Management -
Rapid response tools and datasets for post-fire modeling: linking earth observations and process-based hydrological models to support post-fire remediation

Smoke and Air Quality -
Toward an integrated system for fire, smoke and air quality simulations

CONTACT US -- We'd like to hear your suggestions, ideas, and questions.

Vita Wright, Principal Investigator               |  406.396.5374                   
US Forest Service, Kalispell, Montana

Corey Gucker, Coordinator  |  208.373.4342 
US Forest Service, Boise, Idaho

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