NPR/NGS Radio Expeditions
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Yellowstone National Park
Wyoming, United States
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Latitude and Longitude 44.6, -110.5 Map

Age and Sex
; Environmental;

Media notes

Subject 1: (Interamma angusta). Timecode In: Unknown. Timecode out: Unknown. Subject 2: (Environmental Recording). Subtitle: Walking through brush, Wind. Timecode In: 00:55:03. Timecode out: 00:56:56. Subject 3: (Environmental Recording). Subtitle: Strong wind. Timecode In: 01:05:42. Timecode out: 01:05:54. Habitat: Coniferous Forest; Burn; Burn. Equipment Notes: Stereo=1; Decoded MS stereo. NPR/NGS RADIO EXPEDITIONS YELLOWSTONE DAT #3 DD = Don G. Despain RR = Roy Renkin AC = Alex Chadwick MS = Michael Schweppe ms ms w/ don talking about fires Dr. Don G. Despain Walking in forest levels are a bit low 1:39 dd this was a lodgepole pine forest in 1988 that was ... largely the re-growth ofa fire around 1860 or 70 (walking). 2:08 dd there's a big long stretch of trees about that age that go clear across the park and out into Idaho and when I first mapped that in my vegetation mapping I though well that's interesting all these various fires lined up I thought part ofit burned one yr and then another part ten yrs later and then what happened in 1988 made me think that could all have been one time because very similar things happened then (off-mic) to produce that kind of pattern 3:00 dd so it think if we had been here in 1870 we would have been here in 1870, that we'd have seen something very similar to what we are seeing here today. 3:12 talking off-mic Walking away from traffic ... breaks in recording 7:27 ac some trees are sooty and black and some are silver, why is that? 7:35 dd well those are charcoal on the outside those were dead when fire came through and the ones that are silver that's where the bark's fallen off they were alive at the time the fire came through here and it didn't burn into the wood, it didn't even burn all the way into the bark, I think that's one of the things about fires before wood can burn all the water in has to be boiled away ... that means then that any of this wood that's alive has almost as much water as wood, this just about that proportion, there's also a lot of water in there ... keeps talking about the way wood burns 10:20 10:22 ac you wrote the scientific argument in favor of natural burn policy when Yellowstone was going to adopt that plan as you look around at this forest here now is this what I had intended ... ? 10:43 dd yes this is what I had in mind, fires, its been here longer than we have, apparently fire's been a part of the wood environment as long as there have been plants on the earth. 10:58 ac why was it that you thought this was a good idea? 11:48 dd um, well the management philosophy was to maintain an area w/o human interference and fire supp is a human interference this is a system that's burned, 1988 is not the first time it burned and this is not the last time ...and if we want to have an area the size of Yellowstone where natural processes can go on and we can learn from those natural processes we shouldn't interfere with them ... 12:40 trees themselves are adapted to fire ... talking about adaptation to fire 13:20 dd as I said lodgepole is very attuned to fire. The parent species of lodgepole that's been here for a long time. there were 230 something elk that burned but after 40,000 that's not a very large percentage ... 14:26 14:37 dd most of the fires come late in the nesting season by that time all of the little baby birds 15:23 dd but if your purpose is to maintain natural processes, to have an area where int by man is not what you want then fire suppression is not what you do, its an interference 15:36 15:51 ac when I looked at Yellowstone it looks to me like a place that's incredibly verdant ... but I gather the soil is actually not very good ... so how do you have all this greenery? .. 16:29 we have plants that are adapted to tho... (Notes truncated)

Background Species

Interamma angusta - Interamma angusta

Technical Information


Archival Information

6 Oct 2008 by Ben Brotman
6 Oct 2008 by Ben Brotman
6 Oct 2008 by Ben Brotman