2018 Prescribed Fire Season

prescibed fire

Refuge staff will be conducting prescribed burns on refuge properties. Fire is a management tool that improves habitat.

The Staff of Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) would like to notify the public that we are entering our spring prescribed fire season. The spring prescribed fire season typically runs between now and May 15th. During this time frame smoke may be visible above refuge properties throughout Ottawa and Lucas Counties. Prescribed burning on the refuge is conducted to improve wildlife habitat and reduce the accumulation of fuels that lead to uncontrolled wildfires. Ottawa NWR has historically treated between 100 and 800 acres annually with prescribed fire. A prescribed fire during this time period is especially productive for habitat management and brush control.

We have informed local officials of our planned management actions. Prescribed fire will only be conducted when conditions allow for safe implementation. Any questions concerning the prescribed fire season may be directed to Refuge Manager Jason Lewis or Private Lands Biologist Jeff Finn.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. The Service manages the 150-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System, which encompasses 562 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands and other special management areas. It also operates 69 national fish hatcheries, 63 Fish and Wildlife Management offices and 81 ecological services field stations. The agency enforces federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores nationally significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat such as wetlands, and helps foreign governments with their conservation efforts. It also oversees the Federal Assistance program, which distributes hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies.