Put out wildfires
Overall effectiveness category No evidence found (no assessment)
Number of studies: 0
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Background information and definitions
In some environments, fires can damage important habitats, particularly if habitat patches are small or fragmented, meaning that entire patches can be destroyed in fires. The impacts of large-scale wildfires may result in significant changes to species diversity and community composition in those areas that are affected (Rochester et al. 2010), though the effects of fires and differing fire histories on reptile species, species richness and community composition can be variable and difficult to predict (Lindenmayer et al. 2008 and references therein).
Testing this intervention may present a number of challenges, not least the potential need to allow some wildfires to burn that would have otherwise been put out. Practitioners should therefore carefully consider the harms that could be caused to people’s health and livelihoods by allowing wildfires to burn, as well as the harms to other species and habitats.
See also: Create fire breaks
Lindenmayer D.B., Wood J.T., MacGregor C., Michael D.R., Cunningham R.B., Crane M., Montague‐Drake R., Brown D., Muntz R. & Driscoll D.A. (2008) How predictable are reptile responses to wildfire? Oikos, 117, 1086–1097.
Rochester C.J., Brehme C.S., Clark D.R., Stokes D.C., Hathaway S.A. & Fisher R.N. (2010) Reptile and amphibian responses to large-scale wildfires in southern California. Journal of Herpetology, 44, 333–351.
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This Action forms part of the Action Synopsis:Reptile Conservation
Reptile Conservation - Published 2021