Submitted to: Society for Range Management
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: September 4, 2003
Publication Date: January 24, 2004
Citation: Moffet, C.A., Pierson, F.B., Robichaud, P.R., and Spaeth, K.E. 2004. Modeling rill erosion following fire on steep sagebrush rangeland. 57th Annual Meeting, Society for Range Management. CD-ROM abstract #262. Technical Abstract: Rangeland fire opens a window-of-opportunity during which erosion rates may be accelerated. Experimental evidence suggests that in steep sagebrush range fire has a dramatic effect on rill erosion that persists until the amount of bare ground is reduced to less than 50%. WEPP is the state-of-the-art erosion prediction technology for rangelands and is a likely candidate for addressing the risk posed by fire. Rangeland study sites used during the development of WEPP, however, did not exceed 13% and rill formation was not observed. Data collected form several sites in steep sagebrush rangeland suggest that the equations developed to estimate rill erodibility are not satisfactory. Observations of the rill erosion process in these sites suggest that rill erodibility is temporally variable due to armoring. This armoring effect is not addressed in WEPP.