Fire Ecology Seminar
Environmental Science Policy and Management 265
Fall Semester, 2002

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Course Control Number: 31015   Credits: 2 units
Room: 139 Mulford Hall   Time: Wed 1-3 pm
Course Format: 2 hour period for presentations and discussion.
Prerequisites: instructor approval
Professor: Scott Stephens  642-7304   Office hours: W 10-12 or TBA

Type of course: graduate seminar. This seminar is substantially different from the ESPM 198-298 class that I gave in the fall of 2001. In that course 12 outside speakers from all over the USA were brought to campus to give a seminar on their current research. This seminar will be primarily student driven and will address an advanced area of fire ecology.

The goal of the Fire Ecology Seminar is to focus on a specific fire topic and allow students and a limited number of outside speakers the opportunity to present and discuss current research. Weekly readings and seminars will be followed by discussion.

The specific topic of this seminar is the ecological effects of fire and fire surrogates. Fire surrogates attempt to simulate the ecosystem structures and to a lesser degree, processes, of wildland fire. Each student will select a specific area, with the approval of the instructor, and write a 10-20 page term paper on the topic (double spaced, word processor). Each student will also give a seminar on their subject, approximately 30 minutes long, using power point or other software (not mandatory). Possible topics are diverse and include any aspect of fire and fire surrogates in forests, shrublands, and grasslands. In some areas the written literature may be minimal or non-existent. Students must select an area that has an existing literature in peer-reviewed journal papers. Some work in the library will be necessary before a topic could be selected.

Schedule of Class

8/28 Informal class meeting
9/4 First official class meeting, review class objectives and format
9/11 Bruce Kilgore, US Park Service, retired (Fire management in the USA, past and future)
9/18 Stephens Introduction to fire and fire surrogates
9/25 David Boyed, California State Parks (Management of non-native species with prescribed fire)
10/2 Stephens Historical fire policy in the western USA, implications for fire management
10/9 Prescribed fire at Blodgett, Sierra Nevada Science Meeting Lake Tahoe (no class on campus)
10/16 Attend Air Quality Meeting at UC Blodgett Forest (9 am), Participate in prescribed fire
10/23 Prescribed fire at Blodgett, possible student seminar
10/30 Student seminars (2 students)
11/6 Student seminars (2 students)
11/13 Student seminars (2 students)
11/20 Student seminars (2 students)
11/27 Student seminars (2 students)
12/4/02 Fire meeting in San Diego, no class

Course requirements: Attend all seminars. Participate in discussions. Write one term paper due before the last day of class on your selected topic (with approval of the instructor). One week before your talk distribute a copy of one journal article to the class that will be read before your seminar. The day of your seminar hand out a summary of your seminar, this will aid in discussion.

Readings and Downloads

Fule, P.,Z., W.W. Covington, H.B. Smith, J.D. Springer, T.A. Heinlein, K.D. Huisinga, M.M. Moore.  Comparing ecological restoration alternatives: Grand Canyon, Arizona.  Forest Ecology and Management 5803 (2001) 1-23 (In press)        Download in .pdf format (304KB)