Ecological - Second Order
In order to monitor wildfires at broad spatial scales and with frequent periodicity, satellite remote sensing techniques have been used in many studies. Rangeland susceptibility to wildfires closely relates to accumulated fuel load. The normalised difference vegetation index (NDVI) and fraction of photosynthetically active radiation (fPAR) are key variables used by many ecological models to estimate biomass and vegetation productivity. Subsequently, both NDVI and fPAR data have become an indirect means of deriving fuel load information. For these reasons, NDVI and fPAR, derived from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer on-board Terra and Landsat Thematic Mapper imagery, were used to represent prefire vegetation changes in fuel load preceding the Millennial and Crystal Fires of 2000 and 2006 in the rangelands of south-east Idaho respectively.