Eurasian Fire in Nature Conservation Network


In large parts of Eurasia the use of fire and other disturbances have contributed to shape landscape patterns of high ecological and cultural diversity and value, e.g. heathlands, open grasslands, meadows, and swidden (shifting) agriculture sites, as well as open and stress-resilient forest ecosystems. The rapid socio-economic changes in the past four decades and the recently increasing trend of rural exodus all over Eurasia, however, have resulted in abandonment of traditional land-use methods. With the elimination of these disturbances by cultivation, including traditional burning practices, large areas of Europe are converting to fallow lands, a process that is associated with ecological succession towards brush cover and forest, and an overall loss of open habitats. Besides the loss of valuable biodiversity the abandoned lands constitute an increase of wildfire hazard – a trend that is revealed by a growing number of extremely severe fire disasters. Similarly, the exclusion of fire in natural ecosystems such as northern boreal and sub-boreal coniferous forests in Eurasia has resulted in changing vegetation composition and an increase of wildfire hazard, notably in Central-Eastern Eurasia. Changing paradigms in ecology and nature conservation currently have led to reconsideration of fire-exclusion policies in certain sectors of land / landscape management, nature conservation and forestry.

The symposium is an activity of the Eurasian Fire in Nature Conservation Network (EFNCN), which has been founded in 2000. EFNCN is facilitated by the Fire Ecology Research Group / Global Fire Monitoring Center (GFMC), Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, c/o Freiburg University / United Nations University, Freiburg, Germany. The Symposium will be organized in close association with the EU FIRE PARADOX project, the EU LIFE Project Rohrhardsberg, Obere Elz und Wilde Gutach, the EU Leonardo da Vinci EuroFire project, the UNECE Team of Specialists on Forest Fire, the UNISDR Regional Baltic Wildland Fire Network and the United Nations University (UNU).


The symposium will provide a platform for the exchange of data, expertise, and views of institutions and individuals who are actively applying or conducting research in prescribed burning for the purpose of nature conservation (biodiversity management, habitat management), land and landscape management, and forestry, notably in forest fire management. As the EFNCN is operating at the science-management and science-policy interface, representatives of institutions representing land managers and owners, public services, e.g. fire services, are invited to attend to discuss and share views on professional capacity building in the use of prescribed fire.

Overall, the symposium will support the advancement of the use of prescribed fire in Eurasia; particularly by considering the involvement of local communities in land and fire management.

The region of interest covered by the symposium is temperate-boreal Eurasia with a focus on Europe North of the Alps and the adjoining countries of East / Southeast Europe, Caucasus, Central and Northeast Asia.

Envisaged Outputs of the Symposium

The symposium will include plenary sessions with presentations of project reports and analyses of policies and management strategies, as well as dedicated side events for major projects and other groups.

Among other the desired outputs of the symposium include:

  • Collate and publish the state-of-the art and expertise in the use of prescribed fire (project reports)
  • Update the EFNCN database
  • Prepare a White Paper on the Use of Prescribed Fire in Land Management, Nature Conservation and Forestry in temperate-boreal Eurasia

The attendance at the symposium is by invitation. Invitees are encouraged to submit a title and a half-page abstract of an oral presentation and / or a poster.

All attendees actively working in the use of prescribed fire, either in research or in management application, will receive a template for reporting basic information on prescribed burning sites, aimed at updating the EFNCN database. This database will be shared with the Fire Paradox database.

Programme and Abstracts


Hurth, Hanno
Welcome Address by the Commissioner of Emmendingen County

Seitz, Bernd
Welcome and Introduction to the Rohrhardsberg Life Project

Goldammer, Johann Georg
Opening and Introduction to the Symposium

Rigolot, Eric
Fire Paradox: An Innovative and Integrated Approach to Wildland Fire Management

Rigolot, Eric
Prescribed Burning for Fuel Reduction Purposes in a Conservation Context

Bruce, Michael
Developments in Prescribed Fire and Wildfire Management in the United Kingdom

Rydkvist, Tomas
The use of Fire in Boreal Sweden

Kuivaniemi, Jukka
Organisation and Education for Prescribed Burning by the Swedish Forest Agency

Faerber, Johanna
Prescribed Range Burning in the French Pyrenees

Vogels, Joost
Relight the Fire: Burning as Restoration Tool in the Netherlands

Kaland, Peter Emil and Mons Kvamme
History and Present Experiences with Heathland Burning in Western Norway

Nagy, Daniel and Nikola Nikolov
Increasing Wildfire and Land Management Problems in Middle East and South East Europe: Needs and Opportunities to Introduce the Concept of Prescribed Burning

van de Vijver, Claudius
Fire as a Tool to Manage Temperate Grazing Systems: Lessons to be learnt from Africa

Bilgili, Ertugrul
Prescribed Burning for Successful Regeneration of Calabrian Pine Stands in Turkey

Kisilyakhov, Yegor K.
Prescribed Fire Experiments in Krasnoyarsk Region

McRae, Douglas J.
The Russian FIRE BEAR Project: An Experimental Fire Study to Enhance Forest Sustainability in Central Siberia

Kondrashov, Leonid
Prescribed Burning in the Russian Far East: Present and Future

Oyunsanaa, Byambasuren
Forest Fire Dating in Northern Mongolian Forests

Krogulec, Jaroslaw
Fire Management of open Landscapes in Poland: Conservation Needs and Legal Status

Kozulin, Alexander
Use of Prescribed Fire in the Maintenance and Restoration of Wetland Bird Habitats in Belarus

Zibtsev, Sergiy
Forest fires in Ukraine: management and policy (including a brief on the Experimental Study of Radioecological Impacts of Wildland Fires in the Chernobyl Zone (by Yoschenko, Vasyl)

Page, Hans
Prescribed Burning integrated in Ecological Landscape Management in the Kaiserstuhl Viticulture Area, Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Rietze, Jörg
Ecological Monitoring of the Management of Slope Vegetation by Controlled Burning in the Kaiserstuhl Region, Germany

Lutz, Peter
Traditional Slash-and-Burn Agriculture in the Black Forest: Reconstruction of Burning and Agricultural Techniques

Goldammer, Johann Georg and Hans Page
The LIFE Rohrhardsberg project: The use of Prescribed Fire in Maintaining Endangered Habitats and Landscape Features in the Foothills of the Black Forest

Rietze, Jörg
Ecological Monitoring in the Rohrhardsberg Region, Germany

Brunn, Egbert
Re-establishment of Traditional Heathland Management Tools in the Federal Forest Service District Lausitz, Brandenburg State, Germany

Mause, Rene and Alex Held
First Experiences in the Use of Prescribed Fire for Maintaining open Calluna Heathlands in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany

Spielmann, Michaela and Daniel Kraus
Methodology of Prescribed Burning Demonstration Plot Description and Inventory for the Eurasian Fire in Nature Conservation Network and the Fire Paradox Russia and Mongolia Programme

Valese, Eva
Pianacci Prescribed Burning Project: Fire Risk Reduction and Fuel Load Management for Private Land Owners, Florence, Tuscany, Italy

Lázaro, Andrea
Collection and Mapping of Prescribed Burning Practices in Europe: A First Approach

Bruce, Michael
EuroFire: Developing a Basic Level Competency-Based Training System for Vegetation Fire Management in Europe

Castellnou, Marc
Training for Fire Managers in the Use of Prescribed Fire for Wildfire Hazard Reduction and Nature Conservation in Europe

Outcomes of the Symposium

Selected Impressions

See also Conference Report

The Symposium Group

Ignition of the prescribed demo fire

… continuing

Prescribed burning in
Kaiserstuhl – from the air.


The conference participants and other interested partners are encouraged to contribute to the EFNCN database on prescribed burning demonstration plots by using the following plot inventory form:

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