What is a prescribed burn? A prescribed burn is a method of land management where, under the watchful eye of trained fire managers and practitioners, an area of land is intentionally burned under predetermined weather conditions to meet specific ecological goals. Fire has a long, complex history in California, but “good fire” - or fire managed for resource benefit - is essential in helping us meet our ecological, social, economic, cultural, climate, and public safety needs throughout California.

The California coast, for example, was historically made up of coastal prairie, and was managed by indigenous communities for time immemorial using fire. This land was once the most biodiverse landscape in North America, but through the removal of native people and human’s use of fire, much of the land has shifted from coastal prairie to shrub and forest, and has suffered a decrease in bird diversity as a result. Prescribed burns could be used in these areas to restore coastal prairie plant species and potentially increase bird diversity, among other benefits.

For more information on good fire in California, check out the work of our partners at fire.forward goodfirealliance auduboncanyonranch

Photo: Fitch Mountain Villas (Healdsburg) 6/19/22. Photo courtesy of Sasha Berleman.

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