Prescribed Burns at Soapstone Prairie Natural Area

Image courtesy of www.visitfortcollins.com

Jennifer Roberts

The City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Department, in coordination with The Nature Conservancy, will be conducting several prescribed fires within Soapstone Prairie Natural Area in the spring and summer of 2018.

The Natural Areas Department conducts prescribed burns to accomplish a variety of management goals including reducing weedy vegetation, improving plant community composition for habitat goals, or to reduce the presence of hazardous fuels. This season’s efforts will focus on improving habitat for grassland birds such as the state listed mountain plover and the McCown’s longspur, which both need bare ground within the grassland for nesting. In addition to promoting native grasses that respond well to fire, such as buffalo grass and blue grama, the burns will improve habitat for the federally threatened Colorado butterfly plant.

Prior to burning, information about burn-related trail or area closures will be posted on the trails conditions webpage, fcgov.com/naturalareas/status.php and on NOCO trail report, nocotrailreport.org. Smoke advisory signs will be posted along any potentially affected roads. Officials will closely monitor smoke dispersal to avoid impacts to motorists and residents. To mitigate concerns, the Natural Areas Department will burn only under conditions that promote good smoke dispersal.

Prescribed fire smoke may affect your health. For more information see:

colorado.gov/cdphe/wood-smoke-and-health.

Concerns or questions regarding this prescribed burn can be directed to Jennifer Roberts, Natural Areas Environmental Planner, jroberts@fcgov.com , 970-221-6584 or the Natural Areas Department at (970) 416-2815.

 

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