BLM conducts aerial seeding on 90,000 acres of the Martin Fire
WINNEMUCCA, Nev. – Over the past week, the BLM has been working in coordination with CO Fire Aviation to re-establish sagebrush over 90,000 acres burned by the 2018 Martin Fire. The Martin Fire was largest fire in Nevada history and burned through portions of mature wildlife-rich sagebrush habitat.
“This area in Northern Nevada is one of the largest remaining expanses of sagebrush steppe in the Western States. It is critical habitat for the animals that live there such as elk, mule deer, pronghorn antelope, Greater sage-grouse and numerous others,” said District Fire Management Officer, Donovan Walker.
Utilizing an Air Tractor 602 (AT-602) nearly 30,000 pounds of sagebrush seed was flown from the Winnemucca airport to the valleys and hillsides burned in the fire. The AT-602 is an agricultural aircraft capable of a variety of functions including aerial spraying, fire suppression and seeding. The AT-602 is owned and operated by CO Fire Aviation, a company that specializes in aerial wildfire suppression and rehabilitation.
“This is one of many efforts that the BLM and our partners, including the Nevada Department of Wildlife, Nevada Division of Forestry, and numerous nonprofit organizations, is undertaking to return a portion of Northern Nevada back into the once touted sagebrush sea,” added District Manager, Ester McCullough.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The agency’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. Diverse activities authorized on these lands generated $111 billion in economic output across the country in fiscal year 2019—more than any other agency in the Department of the Interior. These activities supported more than 498,000 jobs.