Prescribed burn covers 2,200 acres in Chickasawhay Ranger District

Prescribed burn covers 2,200 acres in Chickasawhay Ranger District

WAYNE COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - The U.S. Forest Service issued a prescribed burn for more than 2,200 acres in the Chickasawhay Ranger District.

This is something that is done to help reduce the number of wildfires, hazardous fuels, as well as other uses.

"So mainly, prescribed burning is mainly done to reduce any hazardous fuels, to prevent wildfires and to improve habitats for wildlife,” said district ranger Vince Keeler.

One of the main goals for this is to help the Long Leaf Pine ecosystem.

“Historically, we had millions of acres of Long Leaf Pine, which is a historical species here at one point in time," Keeler said. "We are here to restore that and plant and grow that. Part of that process in restoring that is prescribed burning.”

Keeler said much preparation and training goes into these burns.

“There’s a lot of prep time way before the season starts,” Keeler said. “Once the rains cleared, we jumped into prepping fire lines to make sure the fires don’t get out of hand. We are often and always planning.”

Prescribed burning is repeated every two to three years. There are typically around 20 workers controlling the fires.

The Chickasawhay Ranger District is around 151,000 acres total.

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