Assessing the state of initial post-fire vegetation regeneration following a severe montane wildland fire
Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Dept. of Geography and Environment
This thesis utilized field and remote sensing methods to examine post-fire vegetation changes in moisture endmember sites within Waterton Lakes National Park, Alberta, Canada, following the 2017 Kenow Wildland Fire. Field data collected annually from 2018 to 2021 were used to validate multi-temporal RPAS and LiDAR datasets. Results indicate that biomass peaked in 2019, declining annually until 2021, corresponding with rising temperatures and below-average precipitation. RPAS optical imagery and Structure from Motion (SfM) effectively modelled vegetation height and biomass at the plot scale, while LiDAR active Normalized Burn Ratio (aNBR) effectively modelled biomass at the valley scale. Forest-based regression models indicated that proxies for moisture availability, like topographic position, distance to Cameron Creek, and elevation, influenced vegetation growth. This study demonstrated the utility of RPAS and LiDAR for quantifying post-fire vegetation regeneration across different scales and highlights the impact of moisture on vegetation recovery in this montane valley.
Lidar remote sensing , Remote sensing , Fire ecology , Wildfire , Wildland fire , RPAS remote sensing , Structure from motion , Montane environment , Canada , Alberta , Waterton Lakes National Park , Kenow Wildfire , Montane ecology , Vegetation regeneration