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As wildfires flare up across West, research highlights risk of ecological change

Year Published: 2020

One of Jonathan Coop's first vivid memories as a child was watching the flames of the 1977 La Mesa Fire in north-central New Mexico. The human-caused fire burned more than 15,000 acres of pine forests in the Bandelier National Monument and areas surrounding the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Now a forest ecologist and professor at Western Colorado University, Coop studies the ecological effects of fire on forests in the Southwest United States. He's also the lead author of a new scientific synthesis about how wildfires drive changes in forest vegetation across the United States. Sean Parks—research ecologist with the USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station—and Camille Stevens-Rumann, assistant professor in the Department of Forest and Rangeland Stewardship at Colorado State University, are co-authors of the synthesis.

"Wildfire-driven forest conversion in Western North American landscapes," was published July 1 in BioScience. +more....

Citation: Colorado State University. 2020. As wildfires flare up across West, research highlights risk of ecological change, Colorado State University newsletter article, online edition, 2 p. (phys.org/news)
Topic(s): Fire Ecology, Ecosystem Changes, Fire & Wilderness
Ecosystem(s): None
Document Type: Book or Chapter or Journal Article
NRFSN number: 21711
Record updated: Aug 6, 2020