Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: Oklahoma
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Oklahoma Project

Fire Frequency Effects on Habitat Quality in the Cross Timbers Ecoregion

July 2008 - June 2012


Participating Agencies

  • Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation
Prescribed fires to manage wildlife habitat in the Cross Timbers, Oklahoma

We are assesing the effects of fire frequency on habitat quality in three Wildlife Management Areas (WMA) dominated by Cross Timbers forests to provide new knowledge about the interrelationships among wildlife, fire, and vegetation. This information is critical to land managers and policy makers who need to develop management strategies and tools required to produce healthy and sustainable ecosystems under growing pressures from urban and suburban expansion, fragmentation, invasive species, and other threats to forest communities. The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (ODWC) manages 18 WMAs where Cross Timbers forests are a significant component of the landscape so insight from this study will enhance their management for wildlife and diversity values.

Research Publications Publication Date
Burton, J. A., S. W. Hallgren, S. D. Fuhlendorf, and D. M. Leslie, Jr. 2011. Understory response to varying fire frequencies after 20 years of prescribed burning in an upland oak forest. Plant Ecology 212:1513-1525. August 2011
Theses and Dissertations Publication Date
Hensley, G. M. 2010. Fire effects on habitat quality for white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) within the Cross Timbers Ecoregion. M.S. Thesis, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater. 74 pp. December 2010