Area Landowners Start Southwest Nebraska Prescribed Burn Association
Using prescribed burns to improve forage, control red cedars, and improve wildlife habitat
McCook, Neb. â€“ February 22, 2010- A meeting to discuss the formation of a Prescribed Burn Association in Southwestern Nebraska was held in McCook on Tuesday, February 22nd. The meeting was attended by 18 area landowners and wildlife professionals from various organizations. The informational meeting discussed ways in which more landowners could have prescribed burns conducted on their pasture land, CRP fields, and CREP fields. Landowners in attendance felt there was a need for a burn association in this area and formed the Southwest Nebraska Prescribed Burn Association.
The formation of the Southwest Nebraska Prescribed Burn Association will offer landowners new opportunities to improve their grasslands and CRP. â€œA Prescribed Burn Association is a collection of area landowners that join forces to help conduct prescribed burns with each other,â€ explained Drew Larsen, PF/QF Regional Wildlife Biologist. â€œBurn Associations have been formed in other areas of Nebraska and are helping landowners improve their grassland forage and grazing systems.â€
Through this Prescribed Burn Association, landowners who are members of the association in the area will now have access to burn equipment and manpower to safely conduct prescribed burns. â€œThose are typically the limiting factors that make conducting a prescribed burn so hard to accomplish,â€ commented Larsen. â€œBy offering more prescribed burning resources to landowners, we should be able to improve grasslands in the area and help landowners improve their wildlife habitat as well. Implementing prescribed fire to manage grasslands would be a big boost to grassland health and wildlife populations.â€
The newly formed association will be conducting their first official meeting in McCook on Tuesday, March 2ndat 7:00 PM at the Chief Restaurant. At this meeting, the association will be constructing by-laws and setting membership fees. Landowners in Red Willow, Hitchcock, Frontier, and Furnas Counties who have an interest in prescribed fire are encouraged to attend and become members of the association.