OOS 40
Experimental Forests and Ranges As a Research Network

Thursday, August 14, 2014: 1:30 PM-5:00 PM
202, Sacramento Convention Center
Jens T. Stevens, University of California
Peter A. Stine, USDA Forest Service; and Salli Dymond, University of Minnesota
Jens T. Stevens, University of California
The USDA Forest Service currently manages 80 Experimental Forests and Ranges (EFR’s) in the United States and Puerto Rico. These EFR’s are broadly distributed across almost every forested ecoregion in the country, and represent a priceless research and monitoring asset for the scientific community to address critical questions in forest ecology at a continental scale. EFR’s are among the few places within the 193 million acres of the National Forest System that are designated to support long-term and large-scale manipulative experiments. Because of this emphasis on experimentation, EFR’s have been effectively used as showcases in which to demonstrate the practical application of ecological research to forest managers and to the public. Given the increasing interest in and need for coordinated continental-scale research across different ecosystems, EFR’s represent an underutilized resource to address fundamental questions in ecological science and management. The aims of this Organized Oral Session are threefold: 1) To increase awareness of the breadth of ecosystems represented by the EFR network, 2) To highlight current research across a broad range of ecological sub-disciplines that utilizes the EFR network, and 3) To inspire new ideas and dialog about potential research and monitoring opportunities across the EFR network. This session will open with an introduction to the EFR network that identifies strengths, challenges, and opportunities for collaborative research across this diverse collection of research sites. Subsequent speakers will present a broad spectrum of current ecological research, showcasing EFR research from across the country. The unifying theme is that each speaker will discuss new scientific research being conducted at the landscape-scale, which takes advantage of the EFR network to utilize long-term datasets, large-scale experimental manipulations, or collaborations between multiple sites. These speakers will address a range of research findings produced by the network, including: the implementation of a “Smart Forest” environmental sensor network to deliver a full gamut of real-time, digital environmental data to support research and provide fine-scale data on changes to environmental conditions; silvicultural and forest management strategies to improve forest resilience to wildfire and other disturbances; landscape-scale research on soil biota, biogeochemistry, and hydrology; forest responses to climate variability; and utilization of long-term data to describe vegetation responses to different climate and management regimes. The session will be followed by a discussion of how the extensive EFR network can be used to address emerging questions in ecology, especially research involving ecosystem dynamics across large spatial and temporal scales.
1:50 PM
 Environmental sensor applications at experimental forests: The Smart Forest Network
John L. Campbell, USDA Forest Service; Lindsey E. Rustad, USDA Forest Service; Mary Beth Adams, USDA Forest Service; John C. Brissette, USDA Forest Service; David Y. Hollinger, USDA Forest Service; John M. Kabrick, USDA Forest Service; Randall K. Kolka, USDA Forest Service; Mary E. Martin, University of New Hampshire; Thomas M. Schuler, USDA Forest Service; Stephen D. Sebestyen, USDA Forest Service Research
2:10 PM
 Silviculture in southern pinelands: The role of experimental forests
Don C. Bragg, Southern Research Station; James M. Guldin, Supervisory Research Ecologist and Project Leader, Southern Research Station
2:50 PM
 Long-term vegetation monitoring in experimental forests: Example of a functional research network in the Pacific Northwest, USA
Todd M. Wilson, USDA Forest Service; Robert J. Pabst, Oregon State University; Mark E. Harmon, Oregon State University; Jerry F. Franklin, University of Washington; Thomas A. Spies, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station
3:10 PM
3:20 PM
 Tropical forest responses to Global change: Evidence from the Luquillo Experimental Forest
Grizelle González, International Institute for Tropical Forestry; D. Jean Lodge, USDA-Forest Service; Kathleen McGinley, USDA Forest Service; Lisa N. Jennings, USDA Forest Service; Tamara Heartsill-Scalley, USDA Forest Service; Tana E. Wood, USDA Forest Service
3:40 PM
 Climate change effects on hydrologic processes in northern forests
Randall K. Kolka, USDA Forest Service; Stephen D. Sebestyen, USDA Forest Service Research; John Campbell, United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service; Lindsay Rustad, US Forest Service, ME; Salli Dymond, University of Minnesota; Mark B. Green, Plymouth State University