Michael Shirley, Ph.D., Director at the Guana-Tolomato-Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve, reported to Historic City News today that an ecological prescribed burn has been scheduled for Thursday, October 31, 2013, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Ten acres of Historic Pine Flatwoods on the western side of the Guana Peninsula will be burned, weather permitting.
“Smoke may be seen and smelled by nearby hikers and boaters, so we want them to be aware what is happening,” Dr. Shirley informed Historic City News. “As a precaution, we will also close the yellow and blue trails near those intersections for a few hours.”
If you live in the area or are driving by on SR-A1A in South Ponte Vedra Beach, there is no need to be alarmed. Prescribed burning is essential for reducing the chances of wildfires and for minimizing vegetation and dry debris that serves as fuel.
Fires also play an important role in promoting new growth in natural communities. What’s more, the resulting ash provides nutrients that foster new growth.