By Sherry Leis, Great Plains Fire Science Coordinator
As many of you know, it is annual reporting season. As much as I dread digging in on those reports, I also look forward to looking back over the year and seeing how things have added up. Every year I am surprised with how much my team has accomplished.
Fiscal year '15 (Oct-Sept) was no different. I don't usually toot my own horn, but Carol Blocksome, Rachel Peterson, our board of directors, myself, and YOU kicked some booty this year! Let me tell you how.
David Darrow describes his work restoring prairies in Southwest Missouri.
Over the year, we brought you 5 webinars, 22 newsletters and announcements, 12 fact sheets and briefs, 4 syntheses, 8 workshops, 7 videos, 16 field tours, 20 trainings, and filled 24 requests for information. We converted our website to a new platform, Tweeted, posted on Facebook, and otherwise kept you engaged on social media. We have seen you responding to our efforts as well. We gained 63 newsletter list members, 138 Facebook friends, 197 Twitter followers, and 14 YouTube subscribers. We've also filled up most of our field tours and presentations through the year.
The compliments and gratitude we receive from you for the work we do make this job rewarding. I frequently get warm fuzzies knowing that the work we do is valued by so many. We hope that we are making a difference in the region.
Ed Koger shares his knowledge of fire and grazing and lesser prairie chickens at the Hashknife ranch.
The GPE is working on our next renewal proposal. We look forward to planning what 2017-19 will hold for fire science in the Great Plains. The Great Plains Fire Science Exchange gets better and better all the time because you are involved. Not just your feedback, but your involvement in planning and carrying out field tours, meetings, writing documents, and so much more. We have a very small staff and lots of ground to cover and your help is what makes us effective. So my thanks to YOU for your contribution to our success.
Interacting Fire and Grazing is for the Birds
Read our summary to learn how the interaction of fire and grazing creates needed habitat for both breeding and non-breeding grassland birds.
What’s going on in glade soil: effects of edge and fire on mycorrhizae
You may have missed this webinar because our links changed as a result of a software upgrade. We apologize if you didn't get the message and missed it. I think you'll enjoy the recording. Watch it here.
Get to Know our Fire Community
An interview with Jim Ansley
Dr. Ansley is a professor and Regents Fellow with Texas A&M Agrilife Research.
Here's a sample of his interview, but you can read the whole text here:
How did you get started working with fire and grassland systems? I began fire research as a post-doctorate working with Dr. Pete Jacoby at Texas A&M AgriLife Vernon. We both had experience with brush control with chemical applications but began exploring the use of fire together.
What fire topics related to grasslands get you most excited as a researcher, and why? The interaction of woody species and grasses and how fire affects those interactions.
What are the most important fire-related questions we need to answer for grasslands today? Can fire really suppress or eliminate encroaching woody plants on large, regional scales; how frequently can prescribed fires realistically be applied on working ranches; Is there a disconnect between historical fire regimes that maintained a grassland state vs. thinking that we can mimic this using prescribed burning in an environment of more-or-less continual livestock grazing with only occasional deferment for prescribed fires.
WHAT: Association for Fire Ecology Congress, field trip WHEN: November 16-20, 2015. (Bus for field trip will load at 7am sharp on November 20). WHERE: San Antonio, TX
We are sponsoring Field Trip #2. This will be a great event!
WHAT: Sericea lespedeza and Fire Webinar; presented by KC Olson WHEN: December 1, 2015; 2:30-3:30 p.m. (CST) No registration required. LINK
WHAT: Juniper Pollen Webinar; presented by Estelle Levetin WHEN: December 8, 2015; 2:30-3:30 pm (CST) No registration required.LINK
WHAT: 6th National Conference on Grazing Lands WHEN: December 13-16, 2015 WHERE: Grapevine, TX The GPFSE will host a symposium on Prescribed Burn Associations at this meeting. Don't miss it!LINK
WHAT: "Horn flies and ticks: Can fire control them?"
Webinar; presented by J. Derek Scasta WHEN: January 20, 2016; 12:00-1:00 p.m. (CST) No registration required. LINK
WHAT: Society for Range Management Annual meeting,
Post convention tour: Aransas wildlife refuge-Whooping crane and Prescribed Fire. WHEN: February 4. More details will be forthcoming Register early!LINK
Fire Science Roundup
We've summarized a suite of regionally applicable fire science for you. We encourage you to send us citations or papers to include in our next Roundup. Here's an example summary:
Hovick, T. J., R. D. Elmore, S. D. Fuhlendorf, D. M. Engle, and R. G. Hamilton. 2015. Spatial heterogeneity increases diversity and stability in grassland bird communities. Ecological Applications 25: 662-672.
Bird diversity and abundance are strongly correlated with increased heterogeneity. Heterogeneity increased bird community stability at fine and landscape scales. Increasing grazing- and fire-dependent heterogeneity can result in increased diversity and stability.
If you are planning on submitting a proposal to the current call by JFSP, please note the deadline is NOVEMBER 13 2015.
If you would like the GPE to write you a letter of recommendation, please plan to have your request to Sherry by close of business, NOVEMBER 2nd.
(EMAIL TO: GPFireScience@missouristate.edu). Our criteria for providing a recommendation are that the project fit with the fire science needs of the region and that there is a commitment to working with us to outreach the results.