A JFSP Fire Science Exchange Network
Bringing People Together & Sharing Knowledge in the Northern Rockies

Surprises and lessons from the 1988 Yellowstone fires

Author(s): Monica G. Turner, William H. Romme, Daniel B. Tinker
Year Published: 2003

The size and severity of the fires in Yellowstone National Park in 1988 surprised ecologists and managers alike. Much has been learned about the causes and consequences of crown fires from studies of the Yellowstone fires, and some results were surprising. Plant cover in burned areas was restored rapidly by native species, making post-fire rehabilitation generally unnecessary and possibly even counterproductive. While 20th-century fire suppression has affected systems like Yellowstone far less than other ecosystems, managing forests, people, and property in wildfire areas is an ongoing challenge. Insights gained and lessons learned from the Yellowstone fires may be applied elsewhere and can help inform fire policy.

Citation: Turner, M.G.; Romme, W.H.; Tinker, D.B. 2003. Surprises and lessons from the 1988 Yellowstone fires. Front Ecol Environ 1(7):351-358
Topic(s): Fire Effects, Ecological - Second Order, Vegetation, Fire Policy & Law
Ecosystem(s): Subalpine dry spruce-fir forest
Document Type: Book or Chapter or Journal Article
NRFSN number: 13534
TTRS (Tall Timbers Research Station) Number: 15445
Record updated: Mar 22, 2018