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Open AccessArticle

Wildfires Dynamics in Siberian Larch Forests

V.N. Sukachev Institute of Forest, Siberian Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences, Krasnoyarsk 660036, Russia
Siberian Federal University, Krasnoyarsk 660041, Russia
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland 20771, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Yves Bergeron and Sylvie Gauthier
Forests 2016, 7(6), 125;
Received: 29 February 2016 / Revised: 5 June 2016 / Accepted: 8 June 2016 / Published: 17 June 2016
Wildfire number and burned area temporal dynamics within all of Siberia and along a south-north transect in central Siberia (45°–73° N) were studied based on NOAA/AVHRR (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/ Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer) and Terra/MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) data and field measurements for the period 1996–2015. In addition, fire return interval (FRI) along the south-north transect was analyzed. Both the number of forest fires and the size of the burned area increased during recent decades (p < 0.05). Significant correlations were found between forest fires, burned areas and air temperature (r = 0.5) and drought index (The Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index, SPEI) (r = −0.43). Within larch stands along the transect, wildfire frequency was strongly correlated with incoming solar radiation (r = 0.91). Fire danger period length decreased linearly from south to north along the transect. Fire return interval increased from 80 years at 62° N to 200 years at the Arctic Circle (66°33’ N), and to about 300 years near the northern limit of closed forest stands (about 71°+ N). That increase was negatively correlated with incoming solar radiation (r = −0.95). View Full-Text
Keywords: wildfires; drought index; larch stands; fire return interval; fire frequency; burned area; climate-induced trends in Siberian wildfires wildfires; drought index; larch stands; fire return interval; fire frequency; burned area; climate-induced trends in Siberian wildfires
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Ponomarev, E.I.; Kharuk, V.I.; Ranson, K.J. Wildfires Dynamics in Siberian Larch Forests. Forests 2016, 7, 125.

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