By tracking the dynamics of trees, shrubs and woody debris in the Yosemite Forest Dynamics Plot (California, USA) and the Wind River Forest Dynamics Plot (Washington, USA), we hope to detect and understand subtle changes in forest composition, structure and function. This research project offers experiential education for students and citizens: over 115 volunteers and students have contributed to date.
|Yosemite Forest Dynamics Plot:||website|
|Wind River Forest Dynamics Plot:||website|
We are studying western larch forests with varying disturbance histories to test and refine ideas about forest structural development in mixed-severity fire regimes. Our study is anchored by sites with active fire regimes in the Bob Marshall Wilderness. These wilderness sites also serve as benchmark ecosystems to calibrate forest restoration treatments in the nearby Southwestern Crown of the Continent landscape restoration project.
Wilderness Society ecologist Travis Belote blogs about our 2011 field work in the Bob Marshall Wilderness.
Collaborators: Travis Belote
We are investigating the long-term effects of forest restoration treatments in the Southwestern Crown of the Continent.
Cooperators: Southwestern Crown Collaborative
Whitebark pine faces multiple stressors including climate change, fire exclusion, mountain pine beetle and the introduced pathogen white pine blister rust, yet little is known about the effectiveness of silvicultural treatments intended to restore and conserve this imperiled species. We are studying past treatments to learn about their efficacy and ecological effects, including unintended consequences.
Cooperators: Bob Keane, USFS Rocky Mountain Research Station
We are studying mechanisms of pattern formation, ecological consequences of spatial heterogeneity, and methods to incorporate spatial information into forest restoration treatments.
Collaborators: Derek Churchill