Friday, January 25, 2013

Black is the color of Beauty

This week's high and dry weather has allowed for several of our state's finest natural history sites to burn, to burn cleanly and easily and without incident. Fire swept through a prairie up in the Lincoln Hills country, an Ozark outlier that has been managed with fire for over thirty years now. Do you remember the derecho that swept through the Ozarks in May 2009, the 100+mph winds that toppled canopy trees for over 100,000 acres of the St. Francois Mountains and the surrounding area? All of those downed white oaks, black oaks, red oaks (pine remains standing) are cured out now, and fire has been reintroduced to the area to stimulate the herbaceous ground flora.
Glade restoration efforts continue with conducive burning opportunities--no cedar skeletons will remain after these crews are finished with their clearing exercises. Good fire weather for burning brush piles and glades alike allows for easy, simple burns to accomplish the goal of ecosystem restoration. A period of rain ensues this weekend, and hopefully by mid-February we'll be back up and running to accomplish the noble efforts of acres treated for the sustainability and encouragement of biodiversity as the highest and most noble use for wild lands.

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