Monterey Bay area oaks responding to fire mimicry

14 05 2010

Yesterday I went to check on some sick coast live oaks in the Monterey Bay area that have been undergoing fire mimicry treatments for the past two years. The results I believe are encouraging . . .

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Eucalyptus decline linked to fire suppression

7 05 2010

Earlier this year I was contacted by Vic Jurskis, a scientist with Forests NSW (Australia), alerting me to the work he has been doing on fire suppression and eucalyptus decline. He shared with me several of his scientific papers that document the pre-settlement burning of eucalyptus forests by the aboriginal people, and the critical effects that fire suppression is now having on those forests. (Reprints of these papers are available. Contact me about obtaining a reprint.)

In his most recent paper Jurskis writes –

“Exclusion of fire and/or grazing has contributed to shrub or sapling encroachment, weed invasion, loss of herbal diversity and tree decline compounded by pests, parasites and diseases. The ancient trees that were established before European settlement are especially vulnerable because they have become weaker competitors for water and nutrients, whilst they are more vulnerable to fires because they typically have exposed dry wood that is easily ignited and burns readily.”

(from Jurskis, V. 2009. River red gum and white cypress forests in south-western New South Wales, Australia: Ecological history and implications for conservation of grassy woodlands. Forest Ecology and Management 258: 2593–2601.)

In another paper Jurskis states – Read the rest of this entry »

Acid rain in Big Sur – April 2010 update

1 05 2010

Acid rainbow over Big Sur (photo by Lee Klinger)

April numbers are in for the rain pH in Big Sur. Precipitation total was 6.12″ for April and pH readings were made for seven rainfall events. The April values shown below are tending slightly higher (less acidic) than previous readings (see here, here, here, here, and here).

Rainfall amounts and pH in Big Sur - April 2010