Testing for anthropogenic influence on fire regime for a 600-year period in the Jaksha area, Komi Republic, East European Russia

Igor Drobyshev, M Niklasson, P Angelstam, P Majewski

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Abstract

In an attempt to quantitatively evaluate the natural versus anthropogenic signal in site fire histories, the statistical relationship between dendrochronologically dated fire events and tree-ring chronologies (deemed to be an independent proxy for climate variation) was analyzed for 14 sites in a 2600-km(2) area of pine-dominated forests in the Komi Republic (East European Russia) over the period from 1424 to 1954. We developed a cumulative measure of statistical fit between two types of fire events (early- and late-season fires) and ring-width chronologies of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) (total ring- and latewood-width chronologies). For a given site, the statistical fit between fires and tree-ring data tended to decrease with an increasing proportion of unique fire years. Distance from a site to the nearest village (deemed to be a proxy of human impact) explained 50% of the variation in statistical fit between fires and tree-ring data. The fit decreased in the majority of the sites from the earlier (1424-1700) to the later (1700-1960) periods. We interpret this to be a result of increased human impact on the fire regime since 1700 due to intensified colonization of the area.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2027-2036
JournalCanadian Journal of Forest Research
Volume34
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Bibliographical note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015.
The record was previously connected to the following departments: Plant Ecology and Systematics (Closed 2011) (011004000)

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Ecology

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