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Invasion, Fire, and the Future of NW Wildlands Ventenata dubia in the Blue Mountains Ecoregion

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In this deep dive webinar, Dr. Becky Kerns and collaborating scientists will present and synthesize results from a Joint Fire Science funded project aimed at understanding the current and future Ventenata dubia (ventenata) invasion in the Blue Mountains Ecoregion. Wildfires in 2014 and 2015 in the ecoregion reportedly spread in an unusual fashion owing to this invasive annual grass. Concern was raised that ventenata might be a “game-changer” for wildfire. Results from our studies show that ventenata has ecosystem transformation potential and influences landscape-scale fire across the ecoregion. We report these findings with management implications and place our results in the context of other plant invasion research. The webinar includes 90 minutes of scientific presentations with short Q&A, and ends with a 30-minute wrap-up and panel discussion.