ESRI Conservation Program Resources:

Fire Ecology Page 1

(ECP and CTSP members, sites of interest for mapping/GIS, scholarly papers and ESRI Conference Proceedings, and sites with public conservation and GIS data for downloading) (Under Construction)


Sites of interest for mapping/GIS

(Legend: CTSP sites are coded "c" plus the year of the grant, (cs=software, cm=mac), ECP grantees are coded "e". Many groups, especially newer grantees, do not yet have their own sites and are colored green. Other new groups may be described or supported by other sites)

The Nature Conservancy Fire Management & Research Program .(The Nature Conservancy, National Fire Management Program, Tall Timbers Research Station, 13093 Henry Beadel Dr., Tallahassee, FL 32312-9712 tel:850-668-0827 email:tncfire@tncfire.org . Director: Dr. Ronald Myers ) "The Nature Conservancy's Fire Management & Research Program oversees fire management on TNC preserves nationwide, fosters fire ecology research, and promotes the judicious use of prescribed fire to meet biodiversity conservation needs through publications, information exchange, and fire policy reviews. The Fire Program publishes a technical newsletter, Rx Fire Notes, and has been active on the National Commission of Wildfire Disasters and the Federal Wildland Fire Policy and Program Review."

Tall Timbers Research Station, Fl e97 . (see under The Nature Conservancy in ECP Fire section)

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Interagency Fire Center Boise, ID .(U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Andrea Olson ,3833 S. Development Ave., Boise, ID 83705, Phone: (208) 387-5597 E-mail: andrea_olson@mail.fws.gov ) The Branch is responsible for overall staff direction for the Service's fire management program which includes preparedness, fire use, suppression and emergency fire rehabilitation, which functions to support the Service missions.

US Forest Service Fire Effects Information System . (Prescribed Fire and Fire Effects Research Work Unit, Rocky Mountain Research Station, USDA Forest Service. Contact: Cam Johnston (406 329-4810) email: cjohnston/rmrs_missoula@fs.fed.us . or Dennis Simmerman (406 329-4806 email:dsimmerman/rmrs_missoula@fs.fed.us ) "FEIS provides up-to-date information on fire effects on plants and animals...The FEIS database contains synoptic descriptions, taken from current English-language literature of almost 900 plant species, about 100 animal species, and 16 Kuchler plant communities found on the North American continent. "

US Forest Service Fire Links Page . (FOREST SERVICE, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Hours: 8:15 - 4:45 Eastern Time) Sydney R. Yates Federal Building; 201 14th Street, S.W. at Independence Ave., SW Washington, D.C. 20024 (Main) email:Mailroom/wo@fs.fed.us) Includes Fire Systems, Fire News, Fire Research, and Forests & People.

US Forest Service Wildland Fire Assessment System . (Author: Larry Bradshaw, USDA Forest Service, Email: lbradsha/rmrs_missoula@fs.fed.us ) "The broad area component of the Wildland Fire Assessment System (WFAS-MAPS) is generating National Maps of selected fire weather and fire danger components of the National Fire Danger Rating System (NFDRS). Currently being converted to ArcInfo ." some maps are available for download.

USGS BRD South Florida Fire Ecology Project . "Several research projects have been carried out cooperatively with universities or other organizations (e.g. integrated pest management of melaleuca using fire and herbicdes with The Nature Conservancy, and site restoration methods for cypress prairie habitats with the University of Florida). "

USGS BRD Cascadia Field Station Fire Ecology Research (David L. Peterson, Research Biologist, Forest and Rangeland Ecosys. Science Center, Cascadia Field Station, Box 352100, Seattle, WA 98195 206.543.1587 (voice), 206.685.0790 (fax) email:wild@u.washington.edu) . "Although there is considerable literature on fire effects, most of it was collected at a small scale. CFS biologists have identified the problems associated with "scaling up" ecological data (e.g., from a forest stand to a larger landscape) for predicting fire effects on vegetation, especially in the context of large- scale models. An approach was developed for modeling transitions between vegetation types for increased fire frequencies at large spatial scales. This technique is providing an important component for state-of-the-art simulation models (e.g., MAPSS) that predict the impacts of climate change on vegetation at the continental scale. Techniques are also being developed to predict vegetation transitions over time in the context of an operational planning model and GIS database for applications in resource management."

US National Interagency Fire Center .(National Interagency Fire Center, External Affairs Office 3833 S. Development Ave. Boise, Idaho 83705 tel:208-387-5457 fax:208-387-5386 email: mailto:janelle_smith@nifc.blm.gov ) "The National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC) in Boise, Idaho is the nationís support center for wildland fire fighting. Seven federal agencies call NIFC home and work together to coordinate and support wildland fire and disaster operations. These agencies include the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Land Management, Forest Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, National Park Service, National Weather Service, and Office of Aircraft Services." . Don't miss: 1999 Fire Research Projects: (those using GIS see under papers, below)

US NPS Fire Management Program Center, National Interagency Fire Center, Boise, ID . (Manager: Rick Gale, Deputy Chief Ranter, Sue Vap, National Fire Management Officer. email: contact: Paul Reeberg, email:paul_reeberg@nps.gov tel:208 387-5220) "Scientific aspects related to support of the wildland and prescribed fire activities. Oversight to automated scientific computer programs which provide utility to fire management activities. FMPC also acts as an interface with interagency and national level research related to fire management." see Long-Term Monitoring in Fire-Maintained Ecosystems . for the "Fire Monitoring Handbook, which contains a standardized protocol for monitoring and documenting prescribed fire behavior and effects. " Wildland Fire in the National Parks (Understanding Fire's Role in Natural Areas) .

Scholarly papers and ESRI Conference Proceedings

(Legend: ESRI User Conference Papers list the title, then in parentheses "paper" or "abstract" plus the year. Other web-located papers list title, author if known, and excerpt.)

Fire Growth Modeling in an Integrated GIS Environment (1995 ESRI Conf. Paper, David Weinstein, Kass Green, Jeff Campbell, and Mark Finney) ...A fire simulation application, FIRE! has been developed which integrates state of the art fire behavior modeling into the ArcInfo GIS environment. The model's user interface has been designed so that advanced computer and GIS skills are not required by for model execution.

Fire Management And GIS: A Framework For Identifying And Prioritizing Fire Planning Needs (1997 ESRI Abstract, by Anthony Caprio, Corky Conover, MaryBeth Keifer, Pat Lineback Submitted by Pat Lineback . Presented at Fire in California Ecosystems: Integrating Ecology, Prevention, and Management, November 17-20, 1997, Bahia Hotel, San Diego, CA.) "With more funding becoming available for prescribed fire, it will be increasingly important to optimize selection of critical areas most in need of burning, based on value, hazard, and risk criteria. A process under development by Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, integrates these criteria within a Geographic Information System (GIS) framework. Our goal is to identify high priority areas for prescribed burn treatment to optimize use of funding and resources. This use of GIS merges natural resource data with fire management planning information. We developed three major models that were integrated within a GIS: Value, Hazard, and Risk. "

Forest Fire Modeling with GIS in the Swiss National Park, Britta Allgöwer and Reto Schöning. .."The basis for the fire behavior modeling is the Rothermel model for the behavior of surface fires (Rothermel 1972). It calculates for any given point local intensity and spread parameters for the head of a surface fire. Inputs for the model are a two-dimensional wind field, terrain parameters, fuel moisture and a detailed description of the fuel bed...The fire spread model is implemented in SPARKS, a prototype fire behavior modeling application. It is fully integrated in a commercial Geographical Information System (ArcInfo), built on its raster modeling and applications development functionalities." .

Interactive Application of GIS During the Vision Wildfire At Point Reyes National Seashore (1996 ESRI Conf. Paper, Sarah G. Allen, Ph.D.; David Kehrlein; David Shreve; and Richard Krause)...During and immediately following the fire, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Global Positioning Systems (GPS) were utilized to monitor the daily/hourly spread of the fire, measure fire suppression actions, assess damage to natural resources, and evaluate damage to adjacent homes in the wildland/urban interface. Examples of GIS/GPS data layers created included fire intensity, bulldozer lines, and fire perimeter over time. Within two weeks , with the aid of GIS, a team of specialists were able to make a comprehensive assessment of the fire impacts and recommend specific actions to the park service for short and long term restoration and rehabilitation. See also NPS Vision Fire Report Site, with full maps and photos! .

Modeling Urban/Wildland Interface Fire Hazards within a Geographic Information System (1995 Paper, John Radke)...This paper models and assesses the risk of firestorms in the East Bay hills and produces a spatial support system that could help manage and reduce the risk of future firestorms. A geographic Information System (GIS) is used as a framework for quantifying fire hazard in this heterogeneous landscape.

Modeling Exurban Population Growth and the Effects of Alternative Human Settlement Patterns in the Sierra Nevada Mountains (1995 ESRI Conf. Abstract, Timothy P. Duane, Karl Goldstein)...As part of the Sierra Nevada Ecosystem Project, a GIS-based model of exurban population growth was developed to assess the implications of alternative development patterns for the landscape ecology of the Sierra Nevada mountains. The model relies on U.S. Census, county assessor, USGS topography, surface hydrology, SCS soils, road network, water supply, sewage collection and treatment, power and gas supply, vegetation, endangered species, and local land use planning/zoning data.

Simulating Fire Patterns in Heterogeneous Landscapes by Dr. William W. Hargrove, Oak Ridge National Laboratory Environmental Sciences Division . Includes extensive graphics. "ORNL ESD personnel are developing a computer fire simulation, EMBYR, an Ecological Model for Burning the Yellowstone Region, to investigate the causes and consequences of large-scale fires like those that burned in Yellowstone National Park during 1988. EMBYR is not designed to make predictions about single fire events, but will be used as a ``what-if'' tool to investigate possible landscape-scale effects of variation in fire frequency, fire management, and global climate regimes over time scales ranging from complete fire seasons to millennia."

Integrated fuels treatment assessment: Ecological, Economic and Financial impacts by Hayley Hesseln, School of Forestry, University of Montana, Missoula, MT 59812, Phone: (406) 243-4285 E-mail: hayley@forestry.umt.edu "This study is an integrated economic assessment of alternative fuels treatments... we propose to develop a cost-effectiveness analysis of ecological impacts for treatment methods based on standard criterion indicators for sustainability, and GIS information. This approach will be used to identify critical ecosystem functions, and to evaluate success in achieving ecosystem management objectives."

Using goats to prevent or reduce wildland fire danger in shrub dominated, wildland-urban interface areas by Allen Rasmussen, Rangeland Resources Department, Utah State University, Logan, UT 84322-5320 Phone: (435) 797-2469 E-mail: allenr@ext.usu.edu "The purpose of this project is first to determine the degree to which goats can modify fuel types, and then to model the fire behavior mangers might expect, given the modification....Objectives include to Demonstrate, using a completed statewide fire assessment GIS product, how and where this tool can be used on a landscape level."

Incorporation of wildland fuels information into landscape scale land use and planning processes by Philip N. Omi, Western Forest Fire Research Center (WESTFIRE), Department of Forest Sciences, Colorado State University Ft. Collins, CO 80523 Phone: (970) 491-5819 E-mail: phil@cnr.colostate.edu ." This research will produce a comprehensive, user-oriented problem analysis examining extant literature, core information requirements, and recent attempts at incorporating wildland fuels information into landscape scale land use and planning processes. Based on findings from the problem analysis, two different spatially-explicit prototype models will be constructed for the same watershed: a GIS-based simulation model for planning landscape prescribed fires and a model for optimizing large scale fuels management."

Wildland fuels management: evaluating and planning risks and benefits by Peter Landres, USDA Forest Service, Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute, 790 E. Beckwith Ave, P.O. Box 8089, Missoula, MT 59807 Phone: (406) 542-4189 E-mail: plandres/rmrs_missoula@fs.fed.us . "This project will develop methods that allow mangers to incorporate information on the risks and benefits of wildland fuels management into landscape scale planning. We will develop a GIS-based model that quantifies both the risks and benefits of fire across landscapes, providing mangers with information critical for developing landscape-scale fuels and fire management plans that minimize the risks of fire while maximizing its benefits. "

A Spatial Decision Support System for Urban/Wildland Interface Fire Hazards (Esri 1995 conf paper by Dr. John Radke) "This paper models and assesses the risk of firestorms in the East Bay hills and produces a spatial support system that could help manage and reduce the risk of future firestorms. A geographic Information System (GIS) is used as a framework for quantifying fire hazard in this heterogeneous landscape. Two models, one to assess the wildland fire hazard and the other to assess the urban/residential fire hazard, are integrated and embedded within the GIS to map both regional and neighborhood risk."

Spatial and temporal analysis of lightning and fire occurrence in Rocky Mountain wilderness areas by Mathew Rollins, Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721 Phone: (520) 621-1958 E-mail: matt@ltrr.arizona.edu . "This project will make direct comparisons between spatially explicit lightning location databases, databases for fire occurrence, and GIS-based maps of topography and vegetation. Using a Geographical Information System we will answer ecological and geographic questions about the spatial patterning of lightning and fire across landscapes and regions, the characteristics of 'fire-igniting' lightning strikes, and the annual and seasonal variability of lightning occurrence."

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All text by the respective organizations/authors, January 2, 1997

Web layout & design: Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc. January 2, 1996

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