Landscape Patterns and Disturbance

Science Center Objects

FRESC scientists investigate whole-system processes and relationships across space and time in order to advance understanding of natural, managed, and disturbed ecosystems. This includes research, monitoring, remote sensing, modeling, and synthesis to describe the patterns of change across landscapes and the biological and physical processes that generate them.

Natural resource managers are increasingly required to understand human impacts on ecosystems across landscapes. This requires studies of biological, physical, and human patterns and processes across relatively large geographic areas and over long periods of time. Monitoring landscape change and modeling the effects of various management scenarios are useful for developing a comprehensive picture of how ecosystems have changed over time and what will they be like in the future.

We use remote sensing, geographical information systems, and spatially explicit modeling techniques combined with intensive and extensive field sampling approaches to understand past change and future trajectories given various scenarios of land management and climate change. Our research focuses on the effects of management (e.g., harvest, thinning, and fuels management) and landscape disturbance (e.g., fire, insects, wind, and climate change) on forest composition and structure in the Pacific Northwest, and on integrated landscape monitoring to guide regional planning and conservation.

Featured Projects

  • Modeling Responses of Forest Ecosystems to Alternative Landscape Management Scenarios in Western Oregon
  • Developing Modeling Capabilities and Evaluating Effects of Fuel and Timber Management on Forest Landscapes: Landscape Scenario Analysis Project (Phase II - Applegate Watershed)
  • Puget Sound Integrated Landscape Monitoring (PSILM) - Lessons Learned, Conceptual Framework, and Analysis Methods
  • Landscape Patterns of Forest Disturbance and Climate Change on the Olympic Peninsula

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