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Patterns of landscape fire and predicted vegetation response in the North Kimberley region of Western Australia

Fisher, R, Vigilante, T, Yates, C and Russell-Smith, J (2003). Patterns of landscape fire and predicted vegetation response in the North Kimberley region of Western Australia. International Journal of Wildland Fire,12(3-4):369-379.

Document type: Journal Article
Citation counts: Scopus Citation Count Cited 31 times in Scopus Article | Citations

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Title Patterns of landscape fire and predicted vegetation response in the North Kimberley region of Western Australia
Author Fisher, R
Vigilante, T
Yates, C
Russell-Smith, J
Journal Name International Journal of Wildland Fire
Publication Date 2003
Volume Number 12
Issue Number 3-4
ISSN 1049-8001   (check CDU catalogue open catalogue search in new window)
Scopus ID 2-s2.0-0942269732
Start Page 369
End Page 379
Total Pages 11
Place of Publication Collingwood
Publisher CSIRO Publishing
Field of Research 0502 - Environmental Science and Management
0705 - Forestry Sciences
HERDC Category C1 - Journal Article (DEST)
Abstract The paper reports on the development of a decadal fire history, 1990 - 1999, derived from Landsat imagery, and associated assessment of landscape-scale patterns, in a remote, sparsely human-populated region of the high rainfall zone of monsoonal north-western Australia. The assembled fire history confirms observations, derived from coarser-scale imagery, that substantial areas of the North Kimberley are burnt each year. The annual mean extent of burning was 31% ( albeit involving marked inter-annual variability), with most burning occurring in the latter part of the dry season under relatively severe fire weather conditions. Extent of burning was found to be associated with intensity of landuse; most burning occurred on pastoral lands, particularly in association with more fertile basalt soils. Based on previous modelling studies, predicted effects of contemporary fire regimes include increased development of woody regeneration size-classes, especially on non-basalt substrates. In contrast, on sandstone-derived substrata, fire interval data indicate that longer-lived obligate-seeder shrub species are likely to be suppressed and ultimately displaced by contemporary fire regimes. Such observations are supported by recent evidence of regional collapse of the long-lived obligate seeder tree species, Callitris intratropica. Collectively, assembled data point to the need to undertake a thorough appraisal of the status of regional biota in this remote, ostensibly ecologically intact region.
Keywords fire history
savanna
kakadu national-park
regimes
territory
patchiness
frequency
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/WF03021   (check subscription with CDU E-Gateway service for CDU Staff and Students  check subscription with CDU E-Gateway in new window)
 
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Created: Wed, 28 Nov 2007, 14:16:08 CST