International Journal of Wildland Fire International Journal of Wildland Fire Society
Journal of the International Association of Wildland Fire
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Wildfires and the Canadian Forest Fire Weather Index system for the Daxing'anling region of China

Xiaorui Tian A C , Douglas J. McRae B , Jizhong Jin B , Lifu Shu A , Fengjun Zhao A and Mingyu Wang A
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A Research Institute of Forest Ecology, Environment and Protection, Chinese Academy of Forestry, State Forestry Administration’s Key Open Laboratory of Forest Protection, Beijing 100091, China.

B Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service, Sault Ste Marie, ON, P6A 2E5, Canada.

C Corresponding author. Email: tianxr@caf.ac.cn

International Journal of Wildland Fire 20(8) 963-973 https://doi.org/10.1071/WF09120
Submitted: 27 October 2009  Accepted: 2 May 2011   Published: 5 October 2011

Abstract

The Canadian Forest Fire Weather Index (FWI) system was evaluated for the Daxing'anling region of northern China for the 1987–2006 fire seasons. The FWI system reflected the regional fire danger and could be effectively used there in wildfire management. The various FWI system components were classified into classes (i.e. low to extreme) for fire conditions found in the region. A total of 81.1% of the fires occurred in the high, very high and extreme fire danger classes, in which 73.9% of the fires occurred in the spring (0.1, 9.5, 33.3 and 33.1% in March, April, May and June). Large wildfires greater than 200 ha in area (16.7% of the total) burnt 99.2% of the total burnt area. Lightning was the main ignition source for 57.1% of the total fires. Result show that forest fires mainly occurred in deciduous coniferous forest (61.3%), grass (23.9%) and deciduous broad leaved forest (8.0%). A bimodal fire season was detected, with peaks in May and October. The components of FWI system were good indicators of fire danger in the Daxing'anling region of China and could be used to build a working fire danger rating system for the region.

Additional keywords: fire management support systems, fire regime, fire weather.


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