Team Number: 025
School Name: Cuba High School
Area of Science: Forestry
Project Title: Simulated Reforestation of the Cerro Grande Burned Area
On may 5, 2000 the Cerro Grande Fire was ignited. The original fire started as a prescribed burn at the Bandelier National Monument which is approximately 8 miles from Espanola NM. The total estimated area that was burned was 47,650 acres. Most of the vegetation that was burned was Ponderosa Pine. Most of the trees that were affected in the fire were less than 100 years old. The purpose of our project is to try to simulate the reforestation of the 47,650 acres that were burned in the Cerro Grande Fire, and see how long it will take the reforestation to occur. The age of the trees that we are trying to simulate will not be a factor in the simulation. The trees that we will simulate the growth for will be considered a self sustainable tree when it is 1' tall. Elevation and other circumstances will not be taken into effect on this project. The land that we will be simulating will be considered flat and there will be no natural forces acting upon the trees that we are si! mulating the reforestation for.
Progress to Date:
Currently our group is studying the burned area through online pictures and online sources. Currently we have found that there were approximately 1,500 trees per acre that were burned in the Cerro Grande Fire. At 47,650 acres, that would equal out to approximately 71,475,000 trees that were burned. We are trying to find a source that will tell us how long it would take a Ponderosa Pine to regenerate and grow to approximately 1 foot tall.
The expected reforestation time that we expect the 47,650 acres to repopulate will be about 15 years for the trees to grow to be 1' tall.