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How the fires at the Lava Beds affect cave ecology

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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 Parks program; 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 talk show focused on news and interests across our region of Southern Oregon and Northern California. John Baxter is the senior producer, Angela Decker is the producer and Geoffrey Riley hosts the show.