Gladstone/Munising/Rapid River/St. Ignace, MI — The US Forest Service is preparing for 1,191 acres of prescribed burning on the Hiawatha National Forest. Prescribed burning is a tool that can help accomplish a variety of objectives. Such burns are weather-dependent and will likely be conducted between late April and early fall, when appropriate moisture, fuel and wind conditions are more likely.
The prescribed burns will be located as follows:
On the East Zone of the Forest (St. Ignace/Sault Ste. Marie Ranger Districts) there are six burns planned:
1. Rolling-Barrel South Rx Burn – T46N R4W Sec 20,24,39,40,41,42,61 (362 acres) Purpose is wildlife opening maintenance and fuels reduction in the WUI.
2. West Brimley Rx Burn – T46N R3W Sec8, 9 (180 acres) Purpose is wildlife habitat maintenance and fuels reduction in the WUI.
3. Scattered to the Wind Rx Burn – T46N R4W Sec27 (14 acres) Purpose is to eradicate the Pine Cone Bore Beetle and site prep.
4. Wild Carp North and South Rx Burn- T43N R3W Sec 30, 31(150 acres) Purpose is to reintroduce fire into a fire adapted ecosystem.
5. Biscuit South Rx Burn- T44N R4W Sec 21 (34 acres) Purpose is wildlife habitat maintenance.
6. Even Odds Rx Burns- T45N R4W Sec 31 (15 acres) Purpose is to eradicate the Pine Cone Bore Beetle and site prep.
On the West Zone of the Forest (Munising/Rapid River/Manistique Ranger Districts) there are four burns planned:
1. South Schaawe Rx Burn – T40N/R21W/section 18 (154 acres) Purpose is wildlife habitat maintenance and hazardous fuels reduction.
2. 8-mile Rx Burn – T43N/R17W/section 23 (149 acres) Purpose is wildlife habitat maintenance and hazardous fuels reduction.
3. Mike White Rx Burn – T44N/R18W/section 29 (43 acres) Purpose is wildlife habitat maintenance and hazardous fuels reduction.
4. Dutch Mill Rx burn – T42N/R21W/section 17 (90 acres) Purpose is wildlife habitat maintenance and hazardous fuels reduction.
During active burning, smoke and flames may be visible from roads and in areas downwind of the burn site. Smoke may settle in some areas in the evening hours, however, ignition days and times will be adjusted to avoid smoke sensitive areas. If you have health problems that may be aggravated by smoke, please contact your nearest Zone Fire Management Officer. Affected individuals will be notified of prescribed fires that are conducted on Forest Service Lands in their vicinity the day of the burn.:
-East Zone: Brenda Dale at (906) 643-7900 x127.
-West Zone: Sam Duerksen at (906) 474-6442 x 121.
Prescribed burning provides benefits to our natural resources as well as reducing hazardous fuels on our National Forest. The Forest Service’s goals in burning the wildlife openings are:
-Reduce the risk of wildfires by reduce hazardous fuels.
-Provide improved breeding and foraging habitat for early-successional and cavity dependent species.
-Set back vegetative succession and maintain wildlife openings.
-Maintain burn units as part of a system of fuel breaks (including safety zones, escape routes, staging areas and control lines).
-Remove or reduce the impact of non-native invasive species
-Train personnel in the use of wildland fire in a safe and efficient manner.
The Forest Service’s goals in conducting site preparation burns are:
-Naturally regenerate pine using prescribed fire
-Kill red pine cone borer larvae
-Stress over-story red pine to enhance cone production
-Reduce hazardous fuel loading within unit.
Please contact your local Forest Service office if you have any questions.