The primary aim of this systematic review was to clarify if, and how, the diversity and richness of non-pyrophilous and non-saproxylic species in boreal and temperate forests is affected by prescribed burning. We searched not only for studies of interventions in actual forest reserves and other kinds of set-asides, but also for appropriate evidence from non-protected and commercially managed forests, since some of the practices applied in commercial forestry may be relevant to conservation or restoration. Quantitative synthesis of selected studies and a narrative synthesis were used to fulfil this aim.

The secondary aim of this systematic review was to provide an overview of available evidence on how biodiversity of boreal and temperate forests (apart from that of pyrophilous and saproxylic species) is affected by prescribed burning. A systematic map of the evidence base was used to provide this overview.

The ultimate purpose of the review was to investigate whether prescribed burning may be used as a means of conserving or restoring biodiversity in forest set-asides, and if so, what conditions increase its effectiveness.

Project Collaborators

Jacqui Eales – Mistra EviEm, Sweden

Neal R. Haddaway – Mistra EviEm, Sweden

Claes Bernes – Mistra EviEm, Sweden

Steven J. Cooke – Carleton University, Canada

Bengt Gunna Jonsson – Mid Sweden University, Sweden

Jari Kouki – University of Eastern Finland-Joensuu, Finland

Gillian Petrokofsky – University of Oxford, United Kingdom

Jessica J. Taylor – Carleton University, Canada

Project status – Complete

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