PerspectiveEcology

Using fire to promote biodiversity

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Science  24 Mar 2017:
Vol. 355, Issue 6331, pp. 1264-1265
DOI: 10.1126/science.aam7672

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Summary

Fire profoundly influences people, climate, and ecosystems (1). The impacts of this interaction are likely to grow, with climate models forecasting widespread increases in fire frequency and intensity because of rising global temperatures (2). However, the relationship between fire and biodiversity is complex (3, 4). Many plants and animals require fire for their survival, yet even in fire-prone ecosystems, some species and communities are highly sensitive to fire. Recent studies (2, 3, 5, 6) are helping to define fire regimes that support the conservation of species with different requirements in a rapidly changing world.

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