Forest fires have become a regular summertime occurrence in North America, sparking debate about the proper role of fire on the land. The following websites examine fires and fire ecology in different ecosystems, regions, and time periods. The first site (1), from the USGS-Western Ecological Research Center shares information about fire ecology research in the California shrublands, Sierra Nevada forests, and Mohave and Sonoran deserts. The second site (2) features the Fire Ecology Center at Texas Tech University. The Fire Ecology Center focuses on the role of fire in grassland ecosystems and their website contains information on current research, publications, managing pastures, managing problem plants, and more. The third site (3), from the USGS-Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center contains "an annotated bibliography on fire in North American wetland ecosystems and a subject index of all fire-related literature that has appeared in Wildlife Review." Hosted by Yellowstone National Park, the fourth site (4) addresses wildland fires in Yellowstone. The Park website presents brief sections on Fire Ecology, Fire Monitoring, Prescribed Fire, and Fire Effects -- to name a few. The fifth (5) site, from the Canadian Forest Service, provides information about forest fires in Canada including weekly fire statistics, fire research, daily fire maps, a fire database, and more. Part of a great site on the land use history of the Colorado Plateau from Northern Arizona University, the sixth site (6) offers a brief overview of wildfire history and ecology on the Plateau with links to information about ponderosa pine fire ecology, reintroduction of fire to forest ecosystems, and fire ecology research studies. The seventh site (7), from DiscoverySchool.com, contains a lesson plan on forest fire ecology for grade levels 9-12. The lesson spans two class periods and the site provides objectives, materials needed, discussion questions, academic standards, and more. The final (8) website, from the Why Files, "examines the role of fire in natural systems, and the role of science in understanding wildfires." The eleven-page website follows a kid-friendly narrative format and includes a bibliography and glossary.
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