Dr. James Furlaud
Postdoctoral Research Scientist
Fire Centre Communications Coordinator
School of Natural Sciences
The University of Tasmania
James is a Postdoctoral Research Scientist at the University of Tasmania. He studies fire eucalypt forests, specifically looking at fuel dynamics and fire behaviour. He is working with the City of Hobart to provide a scientific evaluation of their fuel reduction strategy. Specifically he is looking at how different types of fuel reduction (i.e. prescribed burning, mechanical thinning, and fuel breaks) affect fire behaviour along the Wildland-Urban Interface of suburbs near bushland.
James did his doctoral degree looking at fire in tall wet eucalypt forests. Tall wet eucalypt forests are one of the most complex flammable ecosystems on earth, and their flammability is poorly understood. They also surround many of Hobart’s outer suburbs. James is using a combination of field-based study and mathematical modelling to better understand fire behaviour and fuel management in these forests. He hopes to use this knowledge to help local councils develop plans to protect their most vulnerable suburbs.
Originally from the United States, a passion for the outdoors led James to a decade of field experience conducting scientific research in forests across the world. He also pursued a keen interest in statistics through a Master’s in forest biometrics at the University of Montana. This combination of field experience and statistical fluency has led to a unique understanding of forest ecology. He hopes to apply this understanding to fire behaviour models so that they may better reflect the complexities of forest fuels, better predicting fire behaviour.
Furlaud, J. M., Prior, L. D., Williamson, G. J., & Bowman, D. M. J. S. (2021). Bioclimatic drivers of fire severity across the Australian geographical range of giant Eucalyptus forests. Journal of Ecology. doi: https://doi.org/10.1111/1365-2745.13663
Cawson, J.G., Hemming, V., Ackland, A., Anderson, W., Bowman D.M., Bradstock, R., Brown, T., Burton, J., Cary, G.J., Duff, T.J., Filkov, A., Furlaud, J.M., Gazzard, T., Kilinc, M., Nyman, P., Peacock, R., Ryan, M., Sharples, J., Sheridan, G., Tolhurst, K., Wells, T., Zylstra, P., Penman, T.D. (2020). Exploring the key drivers of forest flammability in wet eucalypt forests using expert-derived conceptual models. Landscape Ecology. doi: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10980-020-01055-z
Furlaud, J. M., & Bowman, D. M. (2020). Understanding Post-Fire Fuel Dynamics Using Burnt Permanent Forest Plots. Bushfire & Natural Hazards CRC, Melbourne, VIC, Australia. Available at: https://www.bnhcrc.com.au/file/11670/download?token=cicO6oea
Furlaud, J. M., Williamson, G. J., & Bowman, D. M. (2018). Simulating the effectiveness of prescribed burning at altering wildfire behaviour in Tasmania, Australia. International Journal of Wildland Fire, 27(1), 15-28. Full Paper