Meeting name

Post-Fire Plant Recovery in the Mojave and Sonoran Deserts of Western North America

Meeting location

University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Document Type

Poster

Publication Date

12-9-2008

Description

Fire is thought to have been generally rare historically in the Mojave and Sonoran Deserts. However, invasion by exotic grasses (e.g., Schismus spp.) has increased fuel continuity, promoting fire in these deserts. Succession and recovery are not well understood processes in deserts, nonetheless for a novel disturbance like fire. In addition to helping build theories of desert succession and recovery, information on post-fire recovery has numerous practical implications (e.g., determining whether active revegetation is needed). Systematic reviews provide a means for obtaining literature using reproducible search criteria. This approach facilitates a balanced appraisal of available information, synthesizes scattered literature, and may result in insights not apparent by examining research studies individually. Using the systematic approach, I addressed these questions:

  • What are post-fire resprouting frequencies among species?
  • How quickly does perennial plant cover recover following fire?
  • What is the relationship of species composition and time since fire?
  • Which species are major post-fire colonizers?
  • What variation occurs in post-fire responses between deserts?

Keywords

Desert ecology; Fire ecology; Grasses; Invasive plants; North America – Sonoran Desert; Revegetation; United States – Mojave Desert; Wildfires

Disciplines

Desert Ecology | Environmental Indicators and Impact Assessment | Environmental Monitoring | Plant Sciences | Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecology | Weed Science