BLM Front Range Fire and Aviation Management Unit
3028 East Main Street
Canon City, CO 81212
BLM Colorado, Front Range Fire and Aviation Management Unit
For Immediate Release: February 7, 2020
Contact: Brant Porter, Public Affairs Specialist, (719) 269-8553
BLM plans prescribed burn to benefit wildlife at Blanca Wetlands
MONTE VISTA, COLO - The Bureau of Land Management Front Range Fire and Aviation Management Unit is preparing to conduct a prescribed burn at Blanca Wetlands, approximately 11 miles northeast of Alamosa. This prescribed burn will improve habitat for nesting and migratory waterfowl in the wetlands. As many as 184 acres surrounding six ponds will be burned as part of this operation.
The burn is planned to occur between early February and late March 2020. Specific timing of the operation will depend on weather and fuel moisture conditions. Crews will be on site for the duration of the burn.
The primary objective of the prescribed burn is to remove decadent fuels and thick stands of cattails surrounding the ponds. Fire is the most effective method to remove the cattails and dead fuels and improve habitat. Pond shorelines within the wetlands are burned at five to ten year intervals to improve habitat for the 150+ species of birds that use the area.
Smoke from the pile burns will be visible throughout the day of the burn, mostly during the warmest part of the day. With cooler temperatures in the evening, smoke may linger and accumulate in low-lying areas.
Prescribed fire smoke may affect your health. For more information, please visit the Colorado Air Pollution Control Division’s website: https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdphe/wood-smoke-and-health.
Information on the Blanca Wetlands prescribed burn will be available on Inciweb online or on Facebook at @BLMColoradoFire.
For additional information, please contact John Markalunas, Assistant Fire Management Officer for BLM’s Front Range Fire and Aviation Management Unit at (719) 852-8160.