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Individual study: Effects of prescribed fire and season of burn on direct and indirect levels of tree mortality in ponderosa and Jeffrey pine forests in California, USA

Published source details

Fettig C.J., McKelvey S.R., Cluck D.R., Smith S.L. & Otrosina W.J. (2010) Effects of prescribed fire and season of burn on direct and indirect levels of tree mortality in ponderosa and Jeffrey pine forests in California, USA. Forest Ecology and Management, 260, 207-218


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Use prescribed fire: effects on mature trees Forest Conservation

A randomized, controlled study in 2004-2008 in temperate coniferous forest in California USA (Fettig et al. 2010) found that prescribed burning increased tree mortality. The overall percentage of trees killed was higher following early and late-season burning (16% and 18%) than in unburned plots (1%). For trees between 10-20 and between 31-41 cm diameter at breast height, mortality was higher following late-season burning (65% and 5% respectively) than in unburned plots (1% in both categories) and similar to both following early-season burning (22% and 4% respectively). For trees >51 cm diameter at breast height mortality was higher following early-season burning (4%) than in unburned plots (0%) and similar to both following late-season burning (2%). For trees 21-30 and 41-51 cm diameter at breast height mortality was similar in unburned (1% and 0% respectively), early-season (11% and 3% respectively) and late-season burning plots (8% and 2% respectively). Three treatments: control (unburned); early-season prescribed burn (May 2005); late-season prescribed burn (October 2005) were each randomly assigned to three 4 ha plots. Tree mortality was monitored in 2005-2008.