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International Journal of Wildland Fire
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Biomass dynamics of central Siberian Scots pine forests following surface fires of varying severity

Elena A. Kukavskaya A E , Galina A. Ivanova A , Susan G. Conard B , Douglas J. McRae C and Valery A. Ivanov D

A Russian Academy of Sciences, Siberian Branch, V. N. Sukachev Institute of Forest, 50/28 Akademgorodok, Krasnoyarsk, 660036, Russia.
B US Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory, 5775 W US Highway 10, Missoula, MT 59808, USA.
C Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service, 1219 Queen Street East, Sault Ste Marie, ON, P6A 2E5, Canada. [Retired]
D Siberian State Technological University, 82 Mira Street, Krasnoyarsk, 660049, Russia.
E Corresponding author. Email: kukavskaya@ksc.krasn.ru

International Journal of Wildland Fire - http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/WF13043
Submitted: 21 March 2013  Accepted: 21 March 2014   Published online: 27 June 2014


 
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Abstract

In 2000–2002 nine 4-ha prescribed fires of various severities were conducted on experimental plots in mature Scots pine forest in the central Siberian taiga, Russia. Total above-ground living biomass decreased after low- and moderate-severity fires by 10 and 15%, whereas high-severity fire reduced living above-ground biomass by 83%. We monitored changes in fuel structure and biomass for 6–8 years following these fires. By 6–8 years after burning the ground fuel loading had recovered to 101, 96 and 82% of pre-fire levels after fires of low-, moderate- and high-severity. Down woody fuel loading increased by 0.18 ± 0.04 kg m–2 year–1. We developed regressions relating time since fire to changes in above-ground biomass components for fires of different severity for feather moss–lichen Scots pine forest of Siberia. Our results demonstrate the importance of both burn severity and composition of pre-fire surface vegetation in determining rates and patterns of post-fire vegetation recovery on dry Scots pine sites in central Siberia.

Additional keywords: biomass accumulation, boreal forest, fire severity, fuels, Pinus sylvestris.


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