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How the fires at the Lava Beds affect cave ecology

A visit to the Lava Beds National Monument south of Tule Lake is a different experience now, compared with two years ago.

First the Caldwell fire scorched large portions of the area in 2020, then the Antelope fire burned through some of the unburned areas this year. As a result, roughly 97% of the monument burned in a single year.

It's not like a forest that needs fire; the lava flows provide unique ecosystems above and below the ground.

Jordan Kemp is an intern through the Scientists in Parksprogram; she joins us with details of the effects of the fires on the natural environment at the Lava Beds.

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The Jefferson Exchange is Jefferson Public Radio's daily news program focused on issues, people and events across Southern Oregon and Northern California. Angela Decker is the program's senior producer, Charlie Zimmermann is the assistant producer, and Geoffrey Riley hosts the show.