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Philip Higuera

Philip Higuera, Assistant Professor
phone: (208) 885-6024
toll free: Skype: philip.higuera

Office: CNR 204B
Lab: McClure 408
University of Idaho,
P.O. Box 441133
Moscow, ID 83844-1133
Wild Tussock Lake, Brooks Range, Alaska


The materials presented here are to assure timely dissemination of scholarly and technical work. Copyright and all rights therein are retained by authors or by other copyright holders. All persons copying this information are expected to adhere to the terms and constraints invoked by each author's copyright. In most cases, these works may not be reposted without the explicit permission of the copyright holder.

# denotes graduate or undergraduate student advised directly
* denotes graduate student co-advised
@ denotes postdoc contribution while in lab

[33]  Hu, F.S., P.E. Higuera, P.A. Duffy, M.L. Chipman, A.V. Rocha, A.M. Young#, R. Kelly, and M.C. Dietze. 2015. Tundra fires in the Arctic: Natural variability and responses to climate change. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment. In Press.

[32]  Klos, P. Z., J. Abatzoglou, A. Bean, J. Blades, M. A. Clark, M. Dodd, T. E. Hall, A. Haruch, P. E. Higuera, J. D. Holbrook, V. S. Jansen, K. Kemp#, A. Lankford, T. E. Link, T. Magney, A. J. H. Meddens, L. Mitchell, B. Moore, P. Morgan, B. A. Newingham, R. J. Niemeyer, B. Soderquist, A. A. Suazo, K. T. Vierling, V. Walden, and C. Walsh. 2015. Indicators of climate change in Idaho: An assessment framework for coupling biophysical change and social perception. Weather, Climate, and Society. In Press. [PDF]

[31]  Higuera, P. E., J. T. Abatzoglou, J. S. Littell, and P. Morgan. 2015. The Changing Strength and Nature of Fire-Climate Relationships in the Northern Rocky Mountains, U.S.A., 1902-2008. PLoS ONE. 10:e0127563. [PDF]

[30]  Morris, J. L.@, K. K. McLauchlan, and P. E. Higuera. 2015. Sensitivity and complacency of sedimentary biogeochemical records to climate-mediated forest disturbances. Earth-Science Reviews. 148:121-133. [PDF]

[29] Chipman, M.L., V. Hudspith, P.E. Higuera, P.A. Duffy, R.F. Kelly, W.W. Oswald, and F.S. Hu. 2015. Spatiotemporal patterns of tundra fires: Late-Quaternary records from Alaska. Biogeosciences-Discussions. 12: 3177-3209. [PDF]

[28] Higuera, P.E., C.E. Briles, and C. Whitlock. Fire-regime complacency and sensitivity to centennial- through millennial-scale climate change in Rocky Mountain subalpine forests, Colorado, U.S.A. 2014. Journal of Ecology. 102: 1429-1441. [PDF]

Dunnette P.V.#, P.E. Higuera, K.K. McLauchlan, K.M. Derr@, C.E. Briles, M.H. Keefe. 2014. Biogeochemical impacts of wildfires over four millennia in a Rocky Mountain subalpine watershed. 2014. New Phytologist . 203: 900-912 [PDF] *The definitive version is available at Access the recommendation on F1000Prime
Selected media coverage:, Northwest Public Radio. [Press Release at New Phytologist]

[@] Morris J.L.@, C. Courtney-Mustaphi, V. Carter, J. Watt, K. Derr@, M.F.J. Pisaric, R.S. Anderson, & A. Brunelle. 2014. Do bark beetle remains in lake sediments correspond to severe outbreaks? A review of published and ongoing research. Quaternary International. [ResearchGate]

[26] McLauchlan, K., P.E. Higuera, D.G. Gavin, S.S. Perakis, M. C. Mack, H. Alexander, J. Battles, F. Biondi, B. Buma, D. Colombaroli, S. Enders, D.R. Engstrom, F.S. Hu, J.R. Marlon, J.D. Marshal, M. McGlone, J.L. Morris, L.E. Nave, B.N. Shuman, E.A.H. Smithwick, D.H. Urrego, D.A. Wardel, C.J. Williams, and J.J. Williams. 2014. Reconstructing disturbances and their biogeochemical consequences over multiple timescales. Bioscience. 64: 105-116. [PDF]

[25] Kelly, R.F.*, M.L. Chipman*, P.E. Higuera, V. Stefanova, L.B. Brubaker, and F.S. Hu. 2013. Recent burning of boreal forests exceeds variability of the past 10,000 years. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 110: 13055-13060 [PDF]   Access the recommendation on F1000Prime

Selected popular media coverage: Scientific America, LA Times, NSF Science 360, Fairbanks Daily News Miner, CBC Radio.

McWethy, D.B., P.E. Higuera, C. Whitlock, T.T. Veblen, D.M.J.S. Bowman, G. Cary, S.G. Haberle, R.E. Kean, B.D. Maxwell, M.S. McGlone, G.L.W. Perry, J.M. Wilmshurst, A. Holz, and A. Tepley. 2013. A conceptual framework for predicting temperate ecosystem sensitivity to human impacts on fire regimes. Global Ecology & Biogeography, 22: 900-912. [PDF]

[23] Barrett, C.M.*, Kelly, R.F.*, Higuera, P.E., and F.S. Hu. 2013. Climatic and land-cover influences on the spatiotemporal dynamics of Holocene boreal fire regimes. Ecology, 92: 389-402. [PDF]

[22] Brewer, N.W.*, A.M.S. Smith, J.A. Hatten, P.E. Higuera, A.T. Hudak, R.D. Ottmar, and *W.T. Tinkham. 2013. Fuel Moisture Influences on Fire-altered Carbon in Masticated Fuels: An Experimental Study. Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences, 118: 1-11. doi: 10.1029/2012JG002079 [PDF]

[21] Rocha, A.V., M.M. Loranty, P.E. Higuera, M.C. Mack, F.S. Hu, B.M. Jones, A.L. Breen, E.B. Rastetter, S.J. Goetz, and G.R. Shaver. 2012. The footprint of Alaskan tundra fires during the past half-century: implications for surface properties and radiative forcing. Environmental Research Letters, 7: 044039. [PDF]

[20] Higuera, P.E., Chipman, M.L.*, Barnes, J.L., Urban, M.A., and F.S. Hu. 2011. Variability of tundra fire regimes in Arctic Alaska: millennial scale patterns and ecological implications. Ecological Applications, 21: 3211-3226. [PDF]

[19] Higuera, P.E., C. Whitlock, and J. Gage*. 2011. Linking tree-ring and sediment-charcoal records to reconstruct fire occurrence and area burned in subalpine forests of Yellowstone National Park, U.S.A. The Holocene, 21: 327-341. [PDF]

[18] Kelly, R.F.*, P.E. Higuera, C.M. Barrett*, and F.S. Hu. 2011. A signal-to-noise index to quantify the potential for peak detection in sediment-charcoal records. Quaternary Research, 75: 11-17. [PDF]

[17] Higuera, P.E., D.G. Gavin, P.J. Bartlein and D.J. Hallett. 2010. Peak detection in sediment-charcoal records: impacts of alternative data analysis methods on fire-history interpretations. International Journal of Wildland Fire, 19: 996-1014. [PDF]

Hu, F.S., P.E. Higuera, J.E. Walsh, W.L. Chapman, P.A. Duffy, L.B. Brubaker, and M.L. Chipman*. 2010. Tundra burning in Alaska: linkages to climatic change and sea-ice retreat. Journal of Geophysical Research - Biogeosciences, 115, G04002, doi:10.1028/2009JG001270. [PDF]
Selected popular media coverage: Science Daily, Discovery News

[15] Whitlock, C., P.E. Higuera, D. McWethy, and C.E. Briles. 2010. Paleoecological perspectives on fire ecology: revisiting the fire regime concept. The Open Ecology Journal, 3: 6-23. [PDF]

[14] Ali, A.A., P.E. Higuera, Y. Bergeron, and C. Carcaillet. 2009. Comparing fire-history interpretations based on area, number and estimated volume of macroscopic charcoal in lake sediments. Quaternary Research. 72: 462-468. [PDF]

[13] Brubaker, L.B., P.E. Higuera, T.S. Rupp, M. Olson, P.M. Anderson, and F.S. Hu. 2009. Linking sediment charcoal records and ecological modeling to understand causes of past fire-regime change in Alaskan boreal forests. Ecology 90: 1788-1801. [PDF]

Higuera, P.E., L.B. Brubaker, P.M. Anderson, F.S. Hu, T.A. Brown. 2009. Vegetation mediated the impacts of postglacial climate change on fire regimes in the south-central Brooks Range, Alaska. Ecological Monographs. 79: 201-219. [PDF]
Press Release: download pdf
Selected popular media coverage: Science Daily

Marlon, J.R., P.J. Bartlein, M.K. Walsh, S.P. Harrison, K.J. Brown, M.E. Edwards, P.E. Higuera, M.J. Power, C. Whitlock, R.S. Anderson, C. Briles, A. Brunelle, C. Carcaillet, M. Daniels, F.S. Hu, M. Lavoie, C. Long, T. Minckley, P.J.H. Richard, S.L. Shafer, W. Tinner, and C. Umbanhowar. 2009. Wildfire responses to abrupt climate change in North America. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 106: 2519-2524. [PDF]
Selected popular media coverage: Science Daily

Marlon, J.R., P.J. Bartlein, C. Carcaillet, D.G. Gavin, S.P. Harrison, P.E. Higuera, F. Joos, M.J. Power, and I.C. Prentice. 2008. Climate and human influences on global biomass burning over the past two millennia. Nature Geoscience. 1: 697-702 [PDF] supplementary material: [PDF]
Selected popular media coverage: Science Daily

[9] Sugimura, W., D.G. Sprugel, L.B. Brubaker, and P.E. Higuera. 2008. Millennial-scale changes in local vegetation and fire regimes on Mt. Constitution, Orcas Island, Washington, USA, using small hollow sediments. Canadian Journal of Forest Research, 38: 566-575. [PDF]

Briles, C.E., C. Whitlock, P.J. Bartlein, and P.E. Higuera. 2008. Regional and local controls on postglacial vegetation and fire in the Siskiyou Mountains, northern California, USA. Palaeogeography Palaeoclimatology Palaeoecology. 265: 159-169. [PDF]

Higuera, P.E., L.B. Brubaker, P.M. Anderson, T.A. Brown, A.T. Kennedy#, and F.S. Hu. 2008. Frequent Fires in Ancient Shrub Tundra: Implications of Paleo-records for Arctic Environmental Change. PLoS ONE, 3: e0001744.
Featured in Editors' Choice in Science 328:586
Comment on and freely access a PDF of this paper here: Selected popular media coverage: New Scientist, Science Daily, The Economic Times, Our World, Voice of America Radio,March15th, 2008: MP3 file

Power, M.J., J. Marlon, N. Ortiz, P.J. Bartlein, S.P. Harrison, F.E. Mayle, A. Ballouche, R.H.W. Bradshaw, C. Carcaillet, C. Cordova, S. Mooney, P.I. Moreno, I.C. Prentice, K.Thonicke, W. Tinner, C. Whitlock, Y. Zhang, Y. Zhao, A.A. Ali, R.S. Anderson, R. Beer, H. Behling, C. Briles, K.J. Brown, A. Brunelle, M. Bush, P. Camill, G.Q. Chu, J. Clark, D. Colombaroli, S. Connor, A.L. Daniau, M. Daniels, J. Dodson, E. Doughty, M. E. Edwards, W. Finsinger, D. Foster, J. Frechette, M.J. Gaillard, D.G. Gavin, E. Gobet, S. Haberle, D.J. Hallett, P. Higuera, G. Hope, S. Horn, J. Inoue, P. Kaltenrieder, L. Kennedy, Z.C. Kong, C. Larsen, C.J. Long, J. Lynch, E.A. Lynch, M. McGlone, S. Meeks, S. Mensing, G. Meyer, T. Minckley, J. Mohr, D.M. Nelson, J. New, R. Newnham, R. Noti, W. Oswald, J. Pierce, P.J.H. Richard, C. Rowe, M.F.S. Goni, B.N. Shuman, H. Takahara, J. Toney, C. Turney, D.H. Urrego-Sanchez, C. Umbanhowar, M. Vandergoes, B. Vanniere, E. Vescovi, M. Walsh, X. Wang, N. Williams, J. Wilmshurst, and J.H. Zhang. 2008. Changes in fire regimes since the Last Glacial Maximum: an assessment based on a global synthesis and analysis of charcoal data. Climate Dynamics, 30:887-907. [PDF]

[5] Higuera, P.E., M.E. Peters, L.B. Brubaker, and D.G. Gavin. 2007. Understanding the origin and analysis of sediment charcoal records with a simulation model. Quaternary Science Reviews, 26: 1790-1809. [PDF]

Peters, M.E., and P.E. Higuera. 2007 Quantifying the source area of macroscopic charcoal with a particle dispersal model. Quaternary Research, 67: 304-310. [PDF]

[3] Hu, F.S., L.B. Brubaker, D.G. Gavin, P.E. Higuera, J.A. Lynch, T.S. Rupp, and W. Tinner. 2006. How climate and vegetation influence the fire regime of the Alaskan Boreal Biome: the Holocene perspective. Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change, 11: 829-846. [PDF]

[2] Higuera, P.E., L.B. Brubaker, and D.G. Sprugel. 2005. Reconstructing fire regimes with charcoal from small hollows: a calibration with tree-ring records of fire. The Holocene, 15: 238-251. [PDF]

[1] Trombulak, S.C., P.E. Higuera, and M. DesMeules. 2001. Population trends of
wintering bats in Vermont. Northeastern Naturalist, 8: 51-62. [PDF]

Non-refereed Publications

[3] Higuera, P. E., J. L. Barnes, M. L. Chipman*, M. Urban, and F. S. Hu. 2011. Tundra fire history over the past 6000 years in the Noatak National Preserve, northwestern Alaska. Alaska Park Science 10:37-41. [PDF]

McWethy D.B., S.T. Gray, P.E. Higuera, J.S. Littell, G.T. Pederson, A.J. Ray, and C. Whitlock. 2010. Climate and terrestrial ecosystem change in the U.S. Rocky Mountains and Upper Columbia Basin: Historical and future perspectives for natural resource management. Natural Resource Report NPS/GRYN/NRR—2010/260. National Park Service, Fort Collins, Colorado. [PDF]

Higuera, P.E., D.G. Gavin, P.D. Henne, and R.F. Kelly*. 2010. Recent advances in the analysis and interpretation of sediment-charcoal records. PAGES Newsletter,18: 57-59. [PDF]