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Release Date: 04/03/14
Contacts: Chris Barth, Public Information Officer    
  BLM - Southwest District Fire Management    
  Phone: 970.240.5317 (o)    
  970.596.0430 (c)    

Prescribed Burn near Dove Creek, CO Will Reduce Hazardous Fuels and Improve Habitat

Dolores, Colo. – The Bureau of Land Management’s Tres Rios Field Office is planning to conduct a prescribed burn in the West Rim Pines fuels treatment project area, located five miles east of Egnar, Colo. beginning as early as next week, or as conditions allow. The objectives of this prescribed burn are to reduce hazardous fuels, improve wildlife habitat, and improve range conditions. The West Rim Pines prescribed burn will also reintroduce fire to a fire adapted ecosystem and help restore healthy forests and species diversity. This prescribed burn is expected to treat between 150 and 500 acres of ponderosa pine and mountain shrub understory; and will be implemented by both BLM and USFS fire crews.
“After a wet 2013 monsoon and just a slightly drier than average winter, our prescription window is starting to open up for prescribed burning this spring,” said Brad Pietruszka, BLM Fire Management Specialist. “The area to be treated is next to an area that was successfully burned in 2011, and we anticipate similar fire effects from this prescribed burn.”
An environmental analysis and detailed burn plan outline the parameters for the prescribed burn. The burn plan contains specific criteria regarding weather conditions and air quality that must be met to help ensure control of the burn as well as to minimize the potential smoke impacts to local communities. The BLM obtained a Smoke Permit which identifies conditions for implementing the prescribed burn by the Colorado State Air Pollution Control Division.
The prescribed burn is anticipated to last no more than two days. While smoke may be visible in the area at times during the burn, most of the smoke will lift and dissipate during the warmest part of the day.  Smoke may be visible in the area for several days after the burn is completed as vegetation in the interior of the burn continues to smolder. Fire crews will continue to monitor the burn area following completion of the burn to ensure public safety.
For information on wildfires and restrictions in the area, call the Southwest District Fire Management Information line (970.240.1070), visit the MIFMU website (, or follow us on Twitter ( and Facebook (
The Southwest District Fire Management program covers the BLM Colorado’s Southwest District and the Gunnison Field Office (BLM), the Uncompahgre Field Office (BLM), and Tres Rios Field Office (BLM) in the Colorado counties of Archuleta, Conejos, Delta, Dolores, Gunnison, Hinsdale, La Plata, Mesa, Mineral, Montezuma, Montrose, Ouray, Rio Grande, Saguache, San Juan and San Miguel.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

Last updated: 04-03-2014