After the Wildfire

After the Wildfire

Ten Years of Recovery From the Willow Fire

Book - 2017
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"Very few people have ever returned again and again to the site of a natural but disastrous wildfire. John Alcock is such a returnee who recorded the aftermath of the Willow Fire, which burned a large part of the Mazatzal Mountains in central Arizona in the summer of 2004. His book on the subject, Wildfire on the Mountain, describes what happened to the lower reaches of the Mazatzals in the following decade or so. By walking along the South Fork of Deer Creek in all seasons as the years passed, he was rewarded by seeing a remarkable recovery of plant life, which in turn fostered an equally satisfying return of animals to the area ranging from small insects to large mammals. In this book you will find an accessible account of what is known about the response of chaparral plants to fire and the creatures that re-inhabit these plants as they come back from a ferocious blaze. In a series of short chapters, the author introduces us to what he observed on his many walks along the South Fork where he saw the great spreadwing damselfly, the western meadowlark, the reintroduced elk, and many more animals. The questions stimulated by his observations led him to explore the relevant scientific literature which he decodes for his readers. This is a book of biological discovery, a celebration of the capacity of living things to re-occupy a devastated location, and an encouragement for others to engage the natural world, even one that has been burnt to the ground." Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Tucson : The University of Arizona Press, [2017]
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9780816534036
0816534039
Branch Call Number: 363.37097 Al182a 2017
Characteristics: vi, 230 pages ; 22 cm

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PimaLib_NormS Jul 19, 2018

In June of 2004, a wildfire burned through the Mazatzal Mountains near Payson, Arizona. This was, and is, a favorite hiking spot of former ASU professor John Alcock. He has written a book about the remarkable recovery of this area from the destruction wrought by the fire, entitled “After the Wild... Read More »

How does a mountain restore itself following a raging forest fire? Where the Willow Fire burned thousands of acres in the Mazatzal Mountains of central Arizona in 2004, John Alcock invites us along as he monitors and records the serial return of lupine and damselflies, grasshoppers and garter sna... Read More »


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PimaLib_NormS Jul 19, 2018

In June of 2004, a wildfire burned through the Mazatzal Mountains near Payson, Arizona. This was, and is, a favorite hiking spot of former ASU professor John Alcock. He has written a book about the remarkable recovery of this area from the destruction wrought by the fire, entitled “After the Wildfire: Ten Years of Recovery from the Willow Fire”. He concentrates on the Deer Creek part of the Mazatzals and in a series of hikes over a decade’s time, he describes the resilience of nature in the aftermath of disaster. At this point, I must express a gentle forewarning: Professor Alcock’s teaching specialty was animal behavior, and now that he has retired from teaching, he continues his personal research focusing on the behaviors of insects. A book written by a scientist would be likely to have a bit of science in it, so if detailed descriptions of the lives of various insects are not your thing, then perhaps this book is not for you. Of course, the book is about more than that. Much of it is about the manner in which flora and fauna regenerate after the devastation of fire. It is amazing how quickly nature can bounce back from catastrophe. Interestingly, we humans view fires as disasters, but in nature, fires can be cleansing and an opportunity for rebirth. “After the Wildfire” describes just such a rebirth in the Mazatzals.

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