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Estimating the Historic Probability of Stand-Replacement Fire Using the Age-Class Distribution of Undisturbed Forest

W. Reed
Journal / Anthology

Forest Science
Year: 1994
Volume: 40
Issue: 1
Page range: 104-119

A simple probabilistic model for the destruction of forest stands by fire is used to determine a likelihood function for the problem of estimating the per annum probability of stand-replacement fire using data in the form of areas in various age classes of undisturbed old-growth forest. This enables the estimation of either an age-independent fire probability or of the parameters of a parametrically defined age-dependent probability. The model includes contagion effects (the probability of a stand burning being increased by other stands burning). Maximum likelihood is used to obtain estimates of the age-independent per annum probability of stand-replacement fire (or the parameters of an age-dependent model), along with a contagion parameter. Confidence intervals for the fire probability are also obtained.

*Mathematics > Probability and Statistics
*Science > Biology