Photo of E. Louise Loudermilk

E. Louise Loudermilk

Research Ecologist
320 Green St
Athens, GA 30602
Phone: 706-559-4309
Fax: 706-559-4317

Research Interests

My research interests include modeling forest ecosystems to better understand processes occuring at multiple scales. This includes interactions at the plant-plant level, stand-level demographics, to landscape successional patterns, with a special interest in spatial and temporal dynamics associated with natural and anthropogenic disturbances. My research includes aspects of forest and fire ecology, fire science, geostatistics, forest management, ecophysiology, and application of remote sensing, including LIDAR.


Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Ecology, 2010
University of Florida
M.S. in Forestry, 2005
University of Florida
B.S. in Animal Science, 2001
University of Florida

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Research Highlights

Modeled Prescribed Fire Produces Lower Carbon Emissions Through Time Than Wildfires in a Southeastern U.S. Longleaf Pine Woodland (2019)
SRS-2019-27 Prescribed fire is a common management tool in southeastern pinelands, but it is not known how prescribed fire compares with wildfire in terms of carbon emissions and carbon sequestration potential in these ecosystems. USDA Forest Service scientists at the agency's Southern Research Station ran model simulations of prescribed fire and wildfire to quantify these differences. Carbon emissions were lower with prescribed fire use on a two-year interval than any wildfire regime, in addition to the benefits of prescribed fire for native species' biodiversity and habitats. 

Rethinking how we measure forest fuels for advancing wildland fire science and management (2018)
SRS-2018-65 Land managers depend on quality fire research to advance their understanding of wildland fire behavior. Cutting-edge fire behavior models output fire spread, fire intensity, and smoke plumes in three-dimensions, but forest fuels, which are used as model inputs, are not measured in similar dimensions. This research brings fuels to the forefront of fire ecology and fire science. Fuels, when measured appropriately, link fire behavior and forest response to fire – critical knowledge for frequently burned ecosystems.

Transforming Fire Ecology (2019)
SRS-2019-50 Fire ecology is an essential discipline for guiding effective forest management, but progress in the field has stalled, leaving fire managers with critical knowledge gaps. The root of the problem may lie in both the lack of appropriate measurements and a focus on describing patterns instead of uncovering mechanisms in fire effects. New research proposes a path forward to improve both the underlying science of fire ecology and its application.

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