My schedule and availability: http://webpages.uidaho.edu/phiguera/calendar.html
My research focuses broadly on understanding how climate, vegetation, and human activities influence and interact with fire occurrence and fire regimes over a range of time scales, from years to millenia. How will forest ecosystems respond to ongoing and future environmental change? Studying and understanding how systems have changed in the past is a key component to answering these and similar questions at the heart of environmental science, global change science, and sustainable resource management.
I currently direct the Paleoecology and Fire Ecology Lab, where myself, graduate students, and undergraduate students are pursuing research in the US Rocky Mountains, Alaska, and abroad in Tasmania, Australia. This work calls on spatially-explicit modeling and quantitative analyses, charcoal and pollen analysis in lake-sediment records, and dendrochronology. Learn more about ongoing research, opportunities to get involved, and meet lab members on the lab website, linked to above.
At the undergraduate level, I teach two core courses in the Fire Ecology and Management undergraduate degree program: Fire Ecology (FOR 426, Fall),and Fire Behavior (FOR 450, Spring). These two courses focus, respectively, on (a) understanding fire as an ecological process and (b) understanding the biological and physical controls of fire behavior and fire regimes. Both courses emphasize learning and participating in the scientific process. You can connect to the course web sites using the links to the right.
At the graduate level, I am offering a special-topic course (FOR 504-01) titled "Beyond Excel: Computational Data Analysis and Visualization" for Fall 2012, linked to here.
In Fall of 2011, I offered a special-topics course focuses on global fire and ecological feedbacks in the context of climate and land-use change, linked to here.
Alaska and the Canadian Arctic
- 2010-2014: Integrating paleoecological analysis and ecological modeling to elucidate the responses of tundra fire regimes to climate change. Co-PI, funded through the National Science Foundation Arctic System Science Program.
- 2006-2010: Impacts of climate change on the boreal-forest fire regimes of Alaska: lessons from the past and prospects for the future. Post-doctoral and ongoing research, funded through the National Science Foundation, ARC-0612366 to F. S. Hu et al.
- 2006-2010: Reconstructing fire regimes in tundra ecosystems to inform a management-oriented ecosystem model. Post-doctoral research funded through the Joint Fire Science Program, 06-3-1-23 to F. S. Hu et al.
U.S. Rocky Mountains, and Tasmania, Australia
- 2010-2015: WildFIRE PIRE - Feedbacks and consequences of altered fire regimes in the face of climate and land-use change in Australia, New Zealand, and the western U.S. Co-PI, funded through the National Science Foundation, Program for International Research and Education.
- 2006-2009: Spatial and temporal evolution of late Holocene fire regimes in subalpine forests, Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado. Post-doctoral and ongoing research funded through a National Park Ecological Research Fellowship program and the National Park Service.