The impact of aging on laboratory fire behaviour in masticated shrub fuelbeds of California and Oregon, USA

dc.contributor.authorKreye, Jesse K.en
dc.contributor.authorVarner, J. Morganen
dc.contributor.authorKane, Jeffrey M.en
dc.contributor.authorKnapp, Eric E.en
dc.contributor.authorReed, Warren P.en
dc.contributor.departmentForest Resources and Environmental Conservationen
dc.description.abstractMastication of shrubs and small trees to reduce fire hazard has become a widespread management practice, yet many aspects of the fire behaviour of these unique woody fuelbeds remain poorly understood. To examine the effects of fuelbed aging on fire behaviour, we conducted laboratory burns with masticated Arctostaphylos spp. and Ceanothus spp. woody debris that ranged from 2 to 16 years since treatment. Masticated fuels that were 10 years or older burned with 18 to 29% shorter flame heights and 19% lower fireline intensities compared with the younger fuelbeds across three different fuel loads (25, 50 and 75 Mg ha(-1)). Older fuelbeds smouldered for almost 50% longer than the younger masticated fuelbeds. Fuel consumption was 96% in the two higher fuel load categories regardless of fuelbed age, whereas consumption was 77% in the lighter fuel load. Fire intensity in masticated fuels may decrease over time owing to particle degradation, but in dry environments where decomposition is slow, combustion of the remaining fuels may still pose risks for tree mortality and smoke production associated with protracted smouldering.en
dc.description.adminPublic domain – authored by a U.S. government employeeen
dc.description.notesWe acknowledge funding from the Joint Fire Science Program under project JFSP 12-1-03-31. Experiments were conducted at the Humboldt State University's Wildland Fire Laboratory. We thank the USDA Forest Service and USDI Bureau of Land Management for allowing access to masticated sites from which fuel was collected. G. Hamby, J. Tobia and C. Keller collected fuels. Laboratory assistance was provided by M. Dos Santos and E. Oliverio who were supported by the Brazilian Science Without Borders program. S. Chen provided helpful comments on an earlier version of this manuscript, and we thank two anonymous reviewers for helpful comments.en
dc.description.sponsorshipJoint Fire Science Program [JFSP 12-1-03-31]; Brazilian Science Without Borders programen
dc.rightsCreative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedicationen
dc.subjectfireline intensityen
dc.subjectfuel decompositionen
dc.subjectfuels treatmentsen
dc.subjectmechanical masticationen
dc.subjectsmouldering combustionen
dc.titleThe impact of aging on laboratory fire behaviour in masticated shrub fuelbeds of California and Oregon, USAen
dc.title.serialInternational Journal of Wildland Fireen
dc.typeArticle - Refereeden
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