How does seasonal fog influence the fire regime for the central coast of California?
My dissertation takes a multi-scale approach to evaluate how fog affects the fire regime for the Santa Barbara region and the California coast from Ventura to Monterey. First I’m focusing my efforts on determining the effect of fog on live fuel moisture for several shrub species as changes in live fuel moisture have important consequences for fire disturbance. I will evaluate the influence of fog relative to other climate factors in affecting the seasonal change in live fuel moisture. To fully understand changes in live fuel moisture it is important to understand where plants are acquiring their water from during the summer drought.
In addition, I am using stable isotopes of Hydrogen and Oxygen to discern the source of water in plants during the late summer when fog events tend to occur. During my investigation of live fuel moisture I will also explore other means by which fog can influence the water budget of chaparral and CSS shrubs. Fog may affect shrub physiology and could be incorporated into plant tissue via fog drip or foliar uptake.
It is essential to understand the effect of fog on fuel moisture at the scale at which fires occur. I plan on evaluating records from several coastal counties and examining the relationship between meteorological variables, fuel moisture and fire size. With this dissertation I plan on understanding the interactions between fog, shrubs, fuel moisture and patterns of fire at multiple spatial scales.
Emery, N. Summer fog and plant flammability in coastal California shrublands. In prep.
Emery, N. 2016. Foliar uptake in coastal California shrub species. Submitted.
Emery, N. 2015. Ecology Research Proposal Assessment. Submitted. EcoEd Digital Library.
Chen, X., Emery, N., Garcia, E. S., Hanan, E. J., Hodges, H. E., Martin, T., … & Tague, C. 2013. Perspectives on disconnects between scientific information and management decisions on post-fire recovery in western US. Environmental management, 1-12.
Elseroad, A.; Emery, N. and L. Nelson. 2009. Changes in vegetation on range monitoring plots at Naval Weapons Systems Training Facility (NWSTF) Boardman from 1987-2008. Technical Report, The Nature Conservancy.
Elseroad, A. and N. Emery. 2009. Changes in vegetation at Lawrence Memorial Grasslands Preserve from 1993-2008. Technical Report, The Nature Conservancy.