Title: Soil nitrogen mineralization and enzymatic activities in fire and fire surrogate treatments in California
Author: Miesel, J. R.; Boerner, R. E. J.; Skinner, C. N.
Source: Can. J. Soil Sci. 91: 935-946
Description: Forest thinning and prescribed fire are management strategies used to reduce hazardous fuel loads and catastrophic wildfires in western mixed-conifer forests. We evaluated effects of thinning (Thin) and prescribed fire (Burn), alone and in combination (Thin+Burn), on N transformations and microbial enzyme activities relative to an untreated control (Control) at 1 and 3 yr following treatment in northern California. N mineralization and net nitrification were reduced by Thin and by Burn in year 1, and N mineralization was increased by Thin+Burn in year 3, relative to the Control. In general, all experimental treatments reduced soil enzyme activity. To identify overall treatment effects on the below-ground ecosystem, we combined these data with soil physicochemical data from this site to perform non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMS) ordination. NMS ordination showed that Burn and Thin+Burn produced the greatest overall effects on soil, and that overall differences in soil characteristics among treatments diminish over time. These results provide an important benchmark for monitoring ecosystem effects of large-scale wildfire hazard reduction strategies over the long term.
Keywords: fire and fire surrogate, prescribed fire, thinning, mixed-conifer, soil nutrients
View and Print this Publication (569.12 KB)
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
- You may send email to firstname.lastname@example.org to request a hard copy of this publication. (Please specify exactly
which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
Get the latest version of the Adobe Acrobat reader or Acrobat Reader for Windows with Search and Accessibility
Miesel, J. R.; Boerner, R. E. J.; Skinner, C. N. 2011. Soil nitrogen mineralization and enzymatic activities in fire and fire surrogate treatments in California. Can. J. Soil Sci. 91: 935-946.