Oklahoma Forestry Services (OFS) has begun preparations for a series of prescribed burns in the McGee Creek Natural Scenic Recreation Area (NSRA) near Antlers, Oklahoma in southeastern Oklahoma. The burns will occur in early spring of this year in two McGee Creek management units; WMA and Rocky Point.
The reintroduction of fire into this popular backcountry recreation area will help restore the forest ecosystem by improving conditions for both plants and wildlife. By removing “litter” or fallen leaves and branches from the forest floor the regeneration and growth of the native understory plants is encouraged and the potential for a devastating, destructive wildfire is reduced. Special care will be taken around sensitive areas of the NSRA to have as little impact on the resource as possible.
OFS crews will begin clearing previously established fire lines around the perimeter of the WMA and Rocky Point units next week depending on weather conditions. Portions of the NSRA will remain open to visitors during fire line construction, but will be completely closed during the prescribed burns.
“Preparation has begun and tentative dates set for the burns,” said Andy James, OFS Southeast Area Forester. “Signs will be posted at the entrance of the NSRA letting visitors know areas where caution should be taken due to on-going prep work.”
Temporary closures will be posted on www.forestry.ok.gov and www.travelok.com websites. For more information on prescribed burns and benefits to the forest, visit http://www.forestry.ok.gov/rxfire or call 800-299-2468.
Oklahoma Forestry Services, a division of Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food, and Forestry is working in cooperation with the US Bureau of Reclamation and the Oklahoma Departments of Tourism & Recreation and Wildlife Conservation.
Posted on Tue, February 11, 2014
by Communications filed under