Thursday, March 17, 2016

2016 Prescribed Fire in March

Mark Musselman at noon during a prescribed fire on March 16
A slow-moving controlled burn
While conducting a controlled burn with friends in Colleton County on March 16, it was just another day of deciphering the fire weather and burning conditions. This Wednesday brought an 88-degree high temperature, setting a new record high for the day by besting the record that had stood for 71-years. It's also worth noting that this was the eight day in a row of temperatures in the 80's, which is definitely strange for early March weather. The wet winter changed on a dime at the start of the month with western Colleton County only receiving a trace of precipitation during the first half of March.

Certified Prescribed Fire Manager Mark Musselman began the fire around ten a.m. but humidity levels and early green up kept the flames moving very slowly until closer to noon. Around that time e wind became WSW wind became a little more steady and the humidity dipped to where the fire carried through the young longleaf pine tracts that were selected for the thermal pruning. This area is under the management of the Audubon efforts in South Carolina and those wishing to volunteer to help in future endeavors can click Beidler Forest to learn more.

Turning green to black for conservation
Prescribed fire Possum makes a dash out of the hot zone!
March is prescribed fire awareness month, but controlled burns can be conducted from now into summer with the right knowledge and understanding about fuel loads and fire behavior. Often, the results achieved from a spring burn and a summer burn are two different landscapes, so some experimenting over the years is actually necessary to see what best suits the lands you are managing. For more information on prescribed fire and the benefits click Introduction and Education.

To view past blog entires about Prescribed Fire in March click 2015 - 2013 - 2012 - 2009

To view past blog entries on the S.C. Prescribed Fire Council click on 2015 - 2009

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