Santa Fe National Forest considers fall prescribed burns

New Mexico

SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – The Santa Fe National Forest reports that fire managers are carefully considering resuming the limited use of prescribed fire in order to reduce dangerous fuels, improve wildlife habitat, and to create a healthier forest. The final decision to go forward with a prescribed burn will depend on several factors such as the national wildland fire preparedness level, resource availability, fuel moisture levels, air quality, and weather forecasts.

The SFNF states that it will take a risk-informed approach to manage prescribed fire during COVID-19. Prescribed fires help to manage ponderosa pine and dry mixed-conifer forests to reduce the risk of high-severity wildfires.

Every prescribed burn is designed to meet specific objectives and will be managed with a priority on the safety of firefighters and the public. SFNF officials state they will work with partners, collaborators, and communities in order to identify objectives and to address concerns before initiating any prescribed burns.

The following projects are being considered between now and the end of December:

  • 1,200-acre La Presa prescribed burn on Mesa De Los Indios on the north end of the Coyote Ranger District
  • 4,455-acre East Rowe Mesa prescribed burn about 10-miles south of Pecos on the Pecos/Las Vegas Ranger District
  • 350-acre Santa Fe Watershed prescribed burn north of Nichols Reservoir on the Española Ranger District
  • 550-acre Pacheco Canyon prescribed burn north of Forest Road 102 and west of the previously treated block on the Española Ranger district, pending resolution of the current court-ordered injunction related to timber management and Mexican spotted owl
  • 250-acre Borrego Mesa prescribed burn near the Borrego Campground on the Española Ranger District

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