Summary & Purpose
Wildfires are increasing in frequency and extent in the Western United States with climate change and expansion of invasive plant species. On August 10, 2015, the Soda Fire initiated and burned 113,000 hectares (279,000 acres) of sagebrush steppe habitat in southwestern Idaho; it was contained on August 22, 2015. Approximately 29% of the RCEW CZO was burned, and fire severity was rated predominately moderate severity in the areas of study. Aboveground biomass was largely eliminated by the fire. Given the focus of the RCEW CZO on improving prediction and understanding of soil carbon at the pedon to landscape scale, the Soda Fire provided a unique opportunity to ask examine how fire alters soil carbon pools and processes and their recovery. We selected two catchments, one that had been burned and one that had remained unburned and held other state factors such as granite parent material, climate, topography and vegetation relatively constant. We measured soil surface properties and processes (0-2 cm depth) at 2 and 37-months post-fire, at four paired plant-interplant locations on north- and south-facing aspects in each of these catchments. We report soil pH, electrical conductivity, soil organic carbon (SOC) (%), soil nitrogen (N) (%) and isotopes of C and N, modeled bulk density, pyrogenic carbon, soil inorganic carbon, and isotopes of carbonate. We also report carbon mineralization incubation experiments where we incubated soils at 60% water holding capacity for 4 hr for 4 days total to determine potential carbon mineralization rates and cumulative carbon mineralized.
Date of Publication or Submission
This study was conducted in collaboration and cooperation with the USDA Agricultural Research Service, Northwest Watershed Research Center, Boise, Idaho, and landowners within the Reynolds Creek Critical Zone Observatory (RC CZO). The Reynolds Creek Experimental Watershed is supported by the USDA Long-Term Agroecosystem Research (LTAR) network. Support for this research was provided by the National Science Foundation for RC CZO Cooperative agreement, EAR-1331872.
Single Dataset or Series?
August 2015-September 2018
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Lohse, Kathleen A.; Pierson, Derek; Patton, Nicholas; Sanderman, Jonathan; Huber, David P.; Finney, Bruce; Facer, Jeremy; Meyers, Jared; and Seyfried, Mark S.. (2022). Dataset for Surface Soil Property and Processes Following the 2015 Soda Fire at the Reynolds Creek Critical Zone Observatory in SW Idaho [Data set]. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.18122/reynoldscreek.28.boisestate