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Northern Research Station
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Madison, WI 53726
(608) 231-9318
(608) 231-9544 TTY/TDD

Research Topics

photo: Example of a field windbreak that also serves as a living snow fence. Photo by Dacia Meneguzzo, U.S. Forest Service.Trees Outside Forests Image-based Inventory (TOFii)

Severe dust storms of the 1930s in the Great Plains region of the United States spurred the creation of federal programs designed to combat soil erosion. This sparked widespread adoption of agroforestry practices across the central United States, particularly windbreaks and riparian buffers. The current state of these resources has been largely unknown because there hasn’t been a coordinated monitoring effort for several decades until now ... more >>

photo: down woody materialDown Woody Materials

DWM is dead material within forests in various stages of decay such as fallen trees, branches, and leaf litter. DWM is an important component of forest ecosystems across the country. Wildlife biologists, ecologists, mycologists, foresters, and fuels specialists are some of the people interested in DWM.... more >>

photo: carbonCarbon

Rising CO2 in the atmosphere from human-caused sources such as burning fossil fuels and deforestation is now accepted as effecting climate change.....more >>

photo:  collection of invasives species dataInvasives

The threat of non-native invasive plant species in the nation’s forests is an ever growing concern.  In 2003, Forest Service Chief Dale Bosworth listed invasive species as one of the four biggest threats facing our forests.  The aggressive nature of these species allows many of them to out-compete native species causing ecological and economic harm....more >>

photo: vegetationVegetation

Vegetation is the source of primary production and a fundamental determinant of habitat and wildfire fuel profile characterization.  As such, changes in vegetation can have cascading effects throughout an ecosystem....more >>

photo: woodland owner and consultantNational Woodland Owner Survey

The National Woodland Owner Survey (NWOS) is conducted by the USDA Forest Service, Forest Inventory and Analysis program to increase our understanding of private forest-land owners in the United States. The information is intended to help policy makers, resource managers, and others interested in the forest resources of the United States better understand the social context of forests and formulate more informed opinions and decisions....more >>

photo: log pileTimber Products Output (TPO)

FIA conducts Timber Products Output (TPO) studies to estimate industrial and non-industrial uses of roundwood in a state. To estimate industrial uses of roundwood, all primary wood-using mills in a state are canvassed....more >>

photo: soil sampleSoil Quality

The USDA Forest Service's Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program has implemented a national soil monitoring program to address specific questions related to the current status of soil resources and the contribution of forest soils to the global carbon cycle....more >>

photo: mixed forestResources Planning Act (RPA)

FIA provides updates of assessment data every five years as required by the Agriculture Research, Extension and Education Reform Act of 1998  (Farm Bill). These assessments include "an analysis of present and anticipated uses, demand for, and supply of the renewable resources, with consideration of the international resource situation, and an emphasis of pertinent supply, demand and price relationships trends." ...more >>

photo:  ozone damageOzone

Ground level ozone is an air pollutant in the lower atmosphere formed from the reactions of hydrocarbons and nitrous oxides in the presence of sunlight. Automobile engines and industrial processes produce most of the compounds that result in ozone..more >>

Special Studies

Our unit continues to work on special projects that monitor environmental factors such as water quality, soil depletion, forest regineration and the fragmentation of forest lands....
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Last Modified: 05/15/2018