Texas has entered its winter wildfire and prescribed fire season. In the coming weeks, Texas A&M Forest Service will be conducting several prescribed fires in Bastrop County.
Burns will occur at Camp Swift and at an agency-managed property near Rosanky. These are priority areas to reduce vegetation and promote native plant restoration.
“With cooler, dryer weather and an abundance of dormant grasses in the area this time of year, this work takes a proactive approach to fire and fuels management,” said William Hood, wildland urban interface specialist.
Prescribed fire removes excess vegetation, lessening the intensity and spread of a potential wildfire in the future. Other benefits include improvements to wildlife habitat and invasive species control.
“This is just one tool that we use to help maintain the health of the fire-dependent ecosystem,” said Hood.
There are many factors to consider when planning a prescribed burn project.
Writing the project’s burn plan is a comprehensive process. Outlined within a burn plan is an extensive combination of institutional knowledge, data collection, analyses and collaboration. Once a burn plan is approved, fire managers watch for a burn window – the timing that must align to meet the fire prescription.
“The burns will be conducted when weather and wind conditions promote a safe, effective burn with good smoke dispersal,” said Hood.
As the decisions are made to which prescribed burns will be conducted and when, members of the public can find more information posted on https://www.facebook.com/texasforestservice, https://twitter.com/TXForestService and through t local emergency officials.
To learn more about prescribed fire and vegetation management, visit http://tfsweb.tamu.edu/ProtectYourWildlands/.
Source: Texas A&M Forest Service