Jesse K. Kreye, Ph.D.

Jesse K. Kreye, Ph.D.

  • Assistant Research Professor
  • Fire and Natural Resources Management
202 Forest Resources Building
University Park, PA 16802

Areas of Expertise

  • Fire Ecology
  • Fire Behavior and Effects


  • Ph.D., Forest Resources and Conservation, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL (2012)
  • M.S., Natural Resources (Forestry), Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA (2008)
  • B.S., Forestry (Wildland Fire Management), Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA (2004)

Recent Research Publications

Kane, J.M., Kreye, J.K., Barajas-Ramirez, R., Varner, J.M. 2021. Litter trait driven dampening of flammability following deciduous forest community shifts in eastern North America. Forest Ecology and Management 489:119100.

Dems, C.L., Taylor, A.H., Smithwick, E.A.H., Kreye, J.K., Kaye, M.W. 2021. Prescribed fire alters structure and composition of a mid-Atlantic oak forest up to eight years after burning. Fire Ecology 17:1-13. 

Alexander, H.D., Siegert, C., Brewer, J.S., Kreye, J.K., Lashley, M.A., McDaniel, J.K., Paulson, A.K., Renninger, H.J., Varner, J.M. 2021. Mesophication of oak landscapes: evidence, knowledge gaps, and future research. BioScience biaa169.

Cansler, et al. 2020. The Fire and Tree Mortality Database, for empirical modeling of individual tree mortality after fire. Scientific Data 7:1-14.

Kreye, J.K., Kane, J.M., Varner, J.M., Hiers, J.K. 2020. Radiant heating rapidly increases litter flammability through impacts on fuel moisture. Fire Ecology 16:1-10.

Kreye, J.K., Varner, J.M., Kobziar, J.K. 2020. Long-duration heating resulting from forest floor duff smoldering in longleaf pine ecosystems. Forest Science 66:291-303.

Reed, W.P., Varner, J.M., Knapp, E.E., Kreye, J.K. 2020. Long-term changes in masticated woody fuelbeds in northern California and southern Oregon. International Journal of Wildland Fire 29:807-819.

Cansler, C.A., et al. 2020. The fire and tree mortality database, for empirical modeling of individiual tree mortality after fire. Scientific Data 7:1-14.

Shearman, T.M., Varner, J.M., Kreye, J.K. 2019. Pyrogenic flowering of Aristida beyrichiana following 50 years of fire exclusion. Ecosphere 10:e02541.

Kreye, J.K., Hiers, J.K., Varner, J.M., Hornsby, B., Drukker, S.,  O'Brien, J.J. 2018. Effects of solar heating on the moisture dynamics of forest floor litter in humid environments: composition, structure, and position matter. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 48:1-12.

Kreye, J.K., Varner, J.M., Hamby, G.H. 2018. Mesophytic litter dampens flammability in fire-excluded pyrophytic oak-hickory woodlands. Ecosphere 9:1-10.

Varner, J.M., Kuljian, H., Kreye, J.K. 2017. Fires without tanoak: the effects of a non-native disease on future community flammability. Biological Invasions 19:2307-2317.

Kreye, J.K., Varner, J.M., Dugaw, C., Engber, E., Quinn-Davidson, L. 2017. Patterns of duff ignition and smoldering beneath old Pinus palustris: Influence of tree proximity, moisture content, and ignition vectors. Forest Science 16:165-172.

Kreye, J.K., Varner, J.M., Kane, J.M., Knapp, E.E., Reed, W.P. 2016. The impact of fuelbed aging on laboratory fire behaviour in masticated woody fuels.  International Journal of Wildland Fire 25:1002-1008.

Varner, J.M., Kane, J.K., Hiers, J.K., Kreye, J.K., Veldman, J.W. 2016. Suites of fire-adapted traits of oaks in the southeastern USA: Multiple strategies for persistence. Fire Ecology 12:48-64.

Varner, J.M., J.K. Kreye, J.K. Hiers, and J.J. O'Brien. 2016. Recent advances in understanding duff consumption and post-fire longleaf pine mortality. Pages 335-338 in Proceedings of the 18th Biennial Southern Silvicultural Research Conference. eGTR-SRS-212. USDA Forest Service, Southern Res. Sta., Asheville, NC.

Kreye, J.K., Varner, J.M., Kobziar, L.N. 2016. Mechanical mastication as a fuels treatment in southeastern forests. Pages 198-205 in Proceedings of the 18th Biennial Southern Silvicultural Research Conference. eGTR-SRS-212. USDA Forest Service, Southern Res. Sta., Asheville, NC.

Varner, J.M., Kane, J.M., Kreye, J.K., Engber, E. 2015. The flammability of litter: a synthesis. Invited Submission, Current Forestry Reports 1:91-99.

Kreye, J.K., Kobziar, L.N. 2015. The impact of mastication on surface fire behaviour, fuels consumption, and tree mortality in pine flatwoods of Florida, USA. International Journal of Wildland Fire 24:573-579.

Varner, J.M., Kane, J.M., E.M. Banwell, Kreye, J.K. 2015. Flammability of litter from southeastern trees. A preliminary assessment.  Pages 183-187 in: Holley, .A.G., Conner, K.F., Haywood, J.D. (eds.) Proceedings of the 17th Biennial Southern Silvicultural Research Conference. eGTR-SRS-203. USDA Forest Service, Southern Research Station. 551 p.

Kreye, J.K., Varner, J.M., Dugaw, C.J. 2014. Spatial and temporal variability of forest floor duff characteristics in long-unburned Pinus palustris forests.  Canadian Journal of Forest Research 44:1477-1486.

Kreye, J.K, Brewer, N.W., Morgan, P., Varner, J.M., Smith, A.M., Hoffman, C.M., Ottmar, R.D. 2014. Fire behavior in masticated fuels: A review. Forest Ecology and Management 314:193-207.

Kreye, J.K., Kobziar, L.N., Camp, J.M. 2014. Immediate and short-term response of understory fuels following mechanical mastication in a pine flatwoods site of Florida, USA. Forest Ecology and Management 313:340-354.

Kreye, J.K., Varner, J.M., Hiers, J.K., Mola, J. 2013. Toward a mechanism for eastern deciduous forest mesophication: the role of litter drying. Ecological Applications 23:1976-1986.

Kreye, J.K., Kobziar, L.N., Zipperer, W.C. 2013. Experimental burning in masticated palmetto/gallberry: effects of fuel loading and moisture content on fire behavior and lethal heating in compact litter-dominated fuelbeds. International Journal of Wildland Fire 22:440-445.

Kreye, J.K., Varner, J.M., Dugaw, C.J., Cao, J., Szecsei, J., Engber, E.A. 2013. Pine cones facilitate ignition of forest floor duff. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 43:512-516.

Kreye, J.K., Varner, J.M, Knapp, E.E. 2012. Moisture desorption in mechanically masticated fuels: effects of particle fracturing and fuelbed compaction.  International Journal of Wildland Fire 21:894-904.

Kreye, J.K., Varner, J.M., Knapp, E.E. 2011. Effects of Particle Fracturing and Moisture Content on Fire Behaviour in Masticated Fuelbeds Burned in a Laboratory. International Journal of Wildland Fire 20:308-317.