Fire History of the Region
Human-caused wildland fires occur annually in Guam and the inhabited Northern Mariana Islands - Rota, Saipan, and Tinian. Fire has been identified as a key threat to communities, forest resources and watershed integrity in the 2010-2015 Statewide Resource Assessment and Strategies for both regions. Fire records on Guam from 1979-2000 show that an average of 730 fires per year burned 4,800 acres (1,942 ha), or c. 4% of the island's total land area. Annual fire number and area burned increased in years following El Niño events.
The cause of the majority of fires is attributed to intentional burning, typically related to hunting activities. In addition, fire-prone savanna vegetation accounts for 17-23% of the main islands in the Marianas chain. Fire occurrence is most frequent during the pronounced dry season from December to June.
Guam & CNMI Fires
The US Forest Service’s Pacific Island Research Center’s Julian Dendy has mapped the extent of wildfires from 2015 – 2022.
Recent Resources for the Western Pacific
In this Pacific Fire Exchange talk story Q&A session, we round up the latest research, past and present for managers and landowners wanting to understand more about how our four-legged friends (goats, sheep, cows, etc.) if managed properly can help reduce blazing and wildland fire. This month’s science share out and conversation will be with University of Hawai‘i’s Dr. Mark Thorne, Specialist, State Range and Livestock Extension and Dr. Clay Trauernicht, Fire and Ecosystems Specialist.
Dr. Susan Cordell presents the history, the work, the geographic scope and current contributions of the USDA’s Institute of Pacific Islands Forestry (IPIF) based in Hilo, Hawai‘i (10 MINS) Tuesday,…
The Hawai‘i Wildfire Management Organization presented a new on-going project, the “Western Pacific Needs Assessment and Network” to the Pacific Fire Exchange program’s quarterly steering committee meeting in October, 2022.