Burn planned for Oelrichs area this spring
Hot Springs, SD – The Fall River Ranger District of the Buffalo Gap National Grassland is planning a prescribed burn during the late winter or early spring as weather conditions allow. The burn is located in the Horsehead Creek area south of County Road 5, known as East Ardmore Road, located about 10 miles southwest of Oelrichs. The unit is approximately 95 acres in size and is located three miles west of U.S. Highway 385.
The main purpose of the project is to use fire as a tool to reduce fuel loading and to better control noxious weeds on public lands, in conjunction with herbicide treatments.
“Using prescribed fire as a tool in this pasture will allow us to better control noxious weeds while reducing fuel loadings and improving wildlife habitat” said Mike McNeill, Fall River District Ranger.
In order to ensure that the objectives of the project are met and that the burn stays inside established control lines, a very specific set of weather conditions has been established for this project. The burn will not be ignited unless weather conditions including wind speed, wind direction, humidity, and smoke dispersal fall within specific ranges. Control lines will be mowed around the boundary of the unit and fire retardant foam will be used by engines on the day of the burn to keep the fire within control lines. The burn will be managed by personnel from the Nebraska National Forest and Grasslands, as well as our partners from other federal, state, and local agencies.
Personnel from the Fall River Ranger Station will notify adjacent landowners as well as local law enforcement agencies, fire departments, and the media prior to the actual day of the burn. Smoke will be visible from Highway 385 and from the communities of Oelrichs, Smithwick and Chadron. Persons with questions may call the Fall River Ranger District at (605) 745-8207.
–US Forest Service Nebraska National Forests & Grasslands
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