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Contact: Dan Jacobs, 505-757-7235
Contact: Pecos Visitor Center, 505-757-7241
PRESCRIBED BURN PLANNED AT
PECOSNATIONAL HISTORICAL PARK
Superintendent Kathy Billings announced today that Pecos National Historical Park plans to continue implementation of a fuels treatment program on park lands initially begun during the summer of 2005. The program is designed to reduce hazardous fuel levels and to restore and maintain historic pasture lands. As part of this program, up to 800 acres of land will be scheduled for prescribed burning on the west, north and central portions of the park.
Initial treatment of the area began during the summer of 2005 and consisted of removing trees from historic pasture lands. Now that a basic grass cover has been established, initial prescribed burning will remove wood products remaining from the 2005 treatment. Occasional burns in the future will discourage tree growth, help to maintain healthy pasture grass lands and open views that existed on the land when it was used as a ranch. By reestablishing and maintaining the pastures, the park will reduce the amount of fuels available to wildfire, create “buffer zones” that will help firefighters control fires that do start, and decrease the chance that a wildfire could move across the park’s boundary.
“The program, as outlined in the Park’s Fire Management Plan, will help to protect our natural and cultural resources from wildfire and restore the historic landscape” said Superintendent Billings.
The planned burn area is located in the main unit of the park south of Pecos, NM. Projected burn units are located adjacent to, and south of, the Park boundary with the town of Pecos. A second burn area will be adjacent to the Old Denver Highway on the west side of the park. Burning could be initiated anytime between November 11 and December 15, 2009 as weather and fuel conditions warrant and should take approximately 5-10 days to complete. Extensive plans have been developed that will guide the strategic placement of fire personnel and engines based on weather and expected fire behavior. The burn is designed so that most of the smoke will move away from populated areas.
For further information, please call Chief Park Ranger Daniel Jacobs at 505-757-7235