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Prescribed Burn FAQs

Emergency Mgmt

2. Why to you need to use fire?

  • Fire is a natural occurrence in the forest. Tree ring samples from older Ponderosa Pine trees show that fire occurred naturally here every 3-7 years. The prescribed burns are meant to mimic Mother Nature.
  • Native species of plants are able to return after years of lying dormant due to the accumulation of layers of pine needles and forest debris. This debris layer would be consumed regularly under a natural fire regime. Fire stimulates the resurgence of young healthy vegetation and many of the local plant and animal species are fire dependent for regeneration and forage.
  • Decades of suppressing all fires have left the forest overgrown with fuels and vegetation. This unnatural accumulation of dead and live vegetation has contributed to forest health issues such as epidemic bug and beetle kill of trees, adverse impacts to watersheds that benefit our communities, habitat loss for wildlife, and extremely hazardous conditions to nearby communities should a wildfire occur.
  • By conducting prescribed burns we are able to return fire to its natural role in the ecosystem in a safe and prescribed manner.
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