Postfire stimulation of microbial decomposition in black spruce (Picea mariana L.) forest soils: A hypothesis
Document Type: Book Chapter
Author(s): Daniel D. Richter; Katherine P. O'Neill; Eric S. Kasischke
Editor(s): Eric S. Kasischke; Brian J. Stocks
Publication Year: 2000

Cataloging Information

  • biomass
  • black spruce
  • boreal forests
  • carbon
  • combustion
  • decomposition
  • ecosystem dynamics
  • fire frequency
  • fire management
  • New York
  • Picea
  • Picea mariana
  • post fire recovery
  • soil management
  • soil nutrients
  • soil organisms
  • soil temperature
  • soils
  • statistical analysis
  • temperature
  • wildfires
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: May 29, 2020
FRAMES Record Number: 46179
Tall Timbers Record Number: 21853
TTRS Location Status: Not in file
TTRS Abstract Status: Fair use, Okay, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.


From the Conclusions (p.212) ... 'The evaluation of the fire stimulation hypothesis leads to several conclusions. First, the dynamics of C in soils and ecosystems of the boreal zone are clearly important to the global C cycle. Second, although organic matter's decomposition is relatively slow in boreal soils and storage of soil C relatively large, the ecological processes that control C turnover are notable dynamic, especially due to the periodic role of wildfires. Third, fires drastically alter many of the factors controlling soil C storage and microbial decomposition of soil C. Soil temperature, thickness of the biologically active layer, and nutrient availability are all changed by fire. Soil temperature and the depth of the biologically active soil zone may be greatly increased for more than a decade following fire. And fourth, heterotrophic microbial activity in burned sites can be hypothesized to be greatly enhanced following fire. Fire-stimulated microbial respiration in the postburn environment may transfer as much terrestrial C to the atmosphere as that due to wildfire's combustion itself.' © 2000 Springer-Verlag New York, Inc.

Online Link(s):
Richter, D. D., K. P. ONeill, and E. S. Kasischke. 2000. Postfire stimulation of microbial decomposition in black spruce (Picea mariana L.) forest soils: A hypothesis, in ES Kasischke and BJ Stocks eds., Fire, climate change, and carbon cycling in the boreal forest. New York, Springer-Verlag, Ecological Studies; 138, p. 197-213.