Sandhill Crane refuge conducting prescribed burn today

The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is conducting prescribed burn today at the Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge.

The burn site represents 275 acres north of Interstate 10, east of Exit 50, and south of Seaman Road in the vicinity of Waste Water Treatment plant in Ocean Springs. 

Prescribed fires are an essential part of Refuge management to restore the native wet pine savannah, which is home to the critically endangered Mississippi sandhill cranes and Dusky gopher frogs.

Burning to remove hazardous fuels is also part of the service’s mission. Recent rains have made burning much safer and weather conditions favor smoke dispersal. These conditions allowed a burn permit to be issued from the state. 

The refuge staff is highly trained in fire operations and maintains fire breaks around the refuge. The public should be aware that smoke may move through some adjacent areas and that refuge equipment and personnel will be in the area. There is a chance that roads and trails in the area may be temporarily closed.

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