Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center

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Scientists from the Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center capitalize on their diverse expertise to answer scientific questions shaped by the environments of the western United States. We collaborate with each other and with partners to provide rigorous, objective, and timely information and guidance for the management and conservation of biological systems in the West and worldwide. 

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FRESC Research Teams

FRESC scientists, individually or collaboratively with partners, investigate high-priority questions about biological systems.

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Date published: September 18, 2020

Post-Fire Growth of Seeded and Planted Big Sagebrush – Strategic Designs for Restoring Greater Sage-grouse Nesting Habitat

Recent wildfire-induced losses of big sagebrush are outpacing natural recovery and leading to substantial losses in habitat for species such as greater sage-grouse.

Date published: September 18, 2020

Year-Old Coho Capitalize on Stream Resources in Two Alaska Streams

The first year of life is perilous for a salmonid, typified by a critical period of post-emergence mortality. 

Date published: September 18, 2020

Future Alpine Colonization by Limber Pine More Likely than by Engelmann Spruce

Alpine treelines are expected to shift upward in elevation and latitude as a result of climate change, yet this expansion requires favorable conditions for seed germination and successful seedling establishment. 

Publications

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Year Published: 2020

U.S. Geological Survey sagebrush ecosystem research annual report for 2020

The sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystem extends across 251,473 square miles over portions of 13 western States. Affected by multiple stressors, including interactions among fire, invasive plants, and human land uses, this ecosystem has experienced significant loss, fragmentation, and degradation of landscapes once dominated by sagebrush. In turn...

Hanser, Steven E.; Wiechman, Lief A.
Hanser, S.E., and Wiechman, L.A., eds., 2020, U.S. Geological Survey sagebrush ecosystem research annual report for 2020: U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1470, 94 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/cir1470.

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Year Published: 2020

Effects of barred owl (Strix varia) removal on population demography of northern spotted owls (Strix occidentalis caurina) in Washington and Oregon—2019 annual report

Strix occidentalis caurina (northern spotted owl; hereinafter referred to as spotted owl) have rapidly declined throughout the subspecies’ geographic range. Competition with invading Strix varia (barred owl) has been identified as an immediate cause of those declines. A pilot study in California showed that removal of barred owls coupled with...

Wiens, J. David; Dugger, Katie M.; Lesmeister, Damon B.; Dilione, Krista E.; Simon, David C.
Wiens, J.D., Dugger, K.M., Lesmeister, D.B., Dilione, K.E., and Simon, D.C., 2020, Effects of barred owl (Strix varia) removal on population demography of northern spotted owls (Strix occidentalis caurina) in Washington and Oregon—2019 annual report: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2020–1089, 19 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20201089.

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Year Published: 2020

Land-cover and climatic controls on water temperature, flow permanence, and fragmentation of Great Basin stream networks

The seasonal and inter-annual variability of flow presence and water temperature within headwater streams of the Great Basin of the western United States limit the occurrence and distribution of coldwater fish and other aquatic species. To evaluate changes in flow presence and water temperature during seasonal dry periods, we developed spatial...

Gendaszek, Andrew S.; Dunham, Jason B.; Torgersen, Christian E.; Hockman-Wert, David P; Heck, Michael; Thorson, Justin Martin; Mintz, Jeffrey Michael; Allai, Todd