Wildfires can produce significant hydrological and ecological impacts on forest, woodland, and grassland ecosystems depending on fire size, severity, duration, timing, fuel loads, and weather conditions. In the past several decades, wildfire conditions have changed from previous ones in the 20th Century. Wildfires are now burning larger areas in hotter, windier, and drier weather. In addition, the timeframe for these fires has expanded by four months in some regions to 12 months in fire-prone States like California. These large fires, known as megafires (greater than 40,000 acres) are burning more wildland areas every year. Some reach the giga-fire classification (405,000+ acres) with increasing frequency. These trends are contributing to increased desertification of forest lands. This presentation examines the role of these large fires in producing desertification of wildland ecosystems.

Media Record Details

Mar 30, 2022
Daniel G. Neary

Cataloging Information

Fire Behavior
Extreme Fire Behavior
Fire Ecology
Fire Effects

NRFSN number: 24434
FRAMES RCS number: 587118
Record updated: January 10, 2023