SOCORRO COUNTY, N.M. (KRQE) – The Bureau of Land Management Socorro Field Office will burn areas east of Socorro between Monday, Feb. 27, and Friday, Mar. 31 in cooperation with private landowners. Up to 800 acres of grass and brush will be burned according to the Bureau of Land Management.
The burn will take place in three separate units. The first two burn units are located three to 12 miles north of U.S. Highway 380 and about 16 miles east-southeast of Socorro. The third burn unit is east of Socorro County and south of Highway 380.
Objectives for the prescribed burns
- Rejuvenate decadent grass
- Reduce wildfire risk
- Reduce tree encroachment into sacaton draws
- Improve ecosystem health
- Enhance wildlife habitat
The Bureau of Land Management explains the benefits of prescribed burns saying, “prescribed burning is one of the most effective tools to manage vegetation. By reducing the volume of vegetation under prescribed conditions, land managers mimic the natural fire cycle, which greatly reduces the dangers and risks associated with unplanned wildfires.”
The active burning of each unit will take one to two days and smoke will be visible in the area for up to a week following the fires. The burns will be monitored by 15 to 20 firefighters until the visible smoke subsides. Motorists are advised to use caution when driving through the area as smoke may impact visibility.
This week fire management crews will be monitoring the weather daily to decide which date the burning will begin. The Bureau says that prescribed burns will not occur if a red flag warning has been used by the National Weather Service where the burn is planned.
For updates on the prescribed burns visit NMFireInfo.com and for questions contact the Bureau’s Socorro Field Office at (575) 835-0412.