Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Personnel hold rare December prescribed burn at Fort McCoy

Personnel hold rare December prescribed burn at Fort McCoy
Post personnel oversee a prescribed burn Dec. 1, 2017, at an area along railroad tracks on South Post at Fort McCoy, Wis. Personnel with the Fort McCoy Directorate of Emergency Services Fire Department; Directorate of Public Works Environmental Division Natural Resources Branch; Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security; and the Colorado State University Center of Environmental Management of Military Lands under contract with the post help coordinate each prescribed burn at the post. Prescribed burns, generally, are done in the spring and fall seasons because weather conditions are most favorable at those times. Prescribed burns also improve wildlife habitat, control invasive plant species, restore and maintain native plant communities, and reduce wildfire potential. This was the first time in recent history where a prescribed burn was held in December. (U.S. Army Photo by Scott T. Sturkol, Public Affairs Office, Fort McCoy, Wis.)
FORT MCCOY, WI, UNITED STATES
12.07.2017
Story by Scott Sturkol     
Fort McCoy Public Affairs Office   

Fort McCoy held a rare prescribed burn in December as conditions were ideal to have it completed.

Personnel with the Fort McCoy Directorate of Emergency Services Fire Department; Directorate of Public Works Environmental Division Natural Resources Branch; Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security; and the Colorado State University Center of Environmental Management of Military Lands under contract with the post help coordinate each prescribed burn at the post.

Jim Kerkman, installation forester for the Directorate of Public Works (DPW) Environmental Division Natural Resources Branch, said completing and planning prescribed burns has to be a team approach.

"Prescribed burns, generally, are done in the spring and fall seasons because weather conditions are most favorable at those times," Kerkman said.

Charles Mentzel, Fort McCoy forestry technician who oversaw the Dec. 1 burn, said it was an ideal opportunity.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources defines prescribed burns as a way to "improve wildlife habitat, control invasive plant species, restore and maintain native plant communities and reduce wildfire potential."

"Prescribed burns help reduce wildfire potential in areas all around the post — especially in places where military training is taking place," Mentzel said.

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