After the FiresThe Ecology of Change in Yellowstone National Park

After the FiresThe Ecology of Change in Yellowstone National Park

Linda L. Wallace

Print publication date: 2013

ISBN: 9780300100488

Publisher: Yale University Press


This book presents the history and aftereffects of the fires of 1988 that swept through the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem (GYE) describes the chronology of the fires, the areas burned, and the extent of fire in those regions. One of the biggest concerns of the public was how individual plants and animals fared. Thinking hierarchically, we know that the patterns seen at the community and ecosystem levels are the result of mechanistic responses at the individual and population levels. It is important to know how forest trees and grass-land species responded. Some of the greatest public concern was for large animals, particularly Elk. Elk mortality and population responses after the fires took some surprising turns. The GYE is an extremely heterogeneous environment. Plant communities provide essential habitat for the megaherbivores of the GYE as well. Although we know numbers and how the populations of these animals have changed since the fires, it is difficult to determine the mechanisms behind these changes. Using simulation models and comparing their results with reality can yield important insights as to the mechanisms governing ungulate response to fire. The sediments of Yellowstone's lakes provide an opportunity to reconstruct the vegetation and fire history of the region back to the time of late-Pleistocene deglaciation.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 The Fires of 1988: A Chronology and Invitation to Research

Linda L. Wallace, Francis J. Singer, and Paul Schullery

Chapter 4 Establishment, Growth, and Survival of Lodgepole Pine in the First Decade

Jay E. Anderson, Marshall Ellis, Carol D. von Dohlen and William H. Romme

Chapter 6 Elk Biology and Ecology Before and After the Yellowstone Fires of 1988

Francis J. Singer, Michael B. Coughenour, and Jack E. Norland

Chapter 8 Stream Ecosystem Responses to Fire: The First Ten Years

C. Wayne Minshall, Todd V. Royer, and Christopher T. Robinson

Chapter 10 Role of Fire in Determining Annual Water Yield in Mountain Watersheds

Phillip E. Farnes, Ward W. McCaughey, and Katherine J. Hansen

Chapter 13 Fire Patterns and Ungulate Survival in Northern Yellowstone Park: The Results of Two Independent Models

Linda L. Wallace, Michael B. Coughenour, Monica G. Turner, and William H. Romme

Chapter 15 Epilogue: After the Fires. What Have We Learned?

Linda L. Wallace and Norman L. Christensen

End Matter