As the distribution and abundance of non-native cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) in the Great Basin has increased, the extent and frequency of fire in the region has increased by as much as 200%. These changes in fire regimes are associated with loss of the sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) and native grasses and forbs in which many native animals, including Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), breed and feed. Managers have suggested changes in fire regimes, fuels treatments and post-fire restoration with the intent of increasing the probability of Greater Sage-grouse persistence. However, researchers have rarely assessed the potential responses of other sensitive-status birds to these interventions rigorously. This project is collecting and analyzing data on the effects of cheatgrass on current and future fire regimes, and the effects of fire regimes and vegetation treatments on multiple sensitive-status species. Project inferences have considerable potential to inform decisions about management of both ecological processes and species.

Media Record Details

Oct 12, 2017
Erica Fleishman, Jimi Gragg
Topic(s):
Fire Communication & Education, Public Perspectives of Fire Management, Fire Effects, Ecological - Second Order, Invasive Species, Fire & Climate