Spatial and temporal patterns of wildfires in semi-arid south-western Australia

Alison O'Donnell

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

    272 Downloads (Pure)

    Abstract

    I compared selection ratios, a measure of the influence of vegetation types and fuel ages on fire spread, among fire sizes to determine if the segmented model represented actual shifts in the controls of fire spread. Results Fire intervals in the LJR ranged from 3 to >> 67 years (67 years is the limit of the observation period). Fire intervals in shrublands were typically shorter (Weibull b = 46 years) and more dependent on fuel age than most other vegetation types, while fire intervals in open woodlands were much longer (Weibull b = 405 years) and less dependent on fuel age than in shrub-dominated vegetation types. Areas adjacent to or surrounded by salt lakes burnt less frequently (Weibull b = 319 years) and fire intervals were less dependent on fuel age compared to more exposed areas (e.g., Weibull b <101 years). Wildfires tended to occur during extremely dry and hot conditions typically associated with El Niño. However, major (>100,000 ha burnt), minor (150,000 ha. The FSD was described well by a segmented model with break points at 2,286 ha and 41,020 ha. Fuels
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Publication statusUnpublished - 2010

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