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Wind River/Bighorn Basin District
Release Date: 03/05/12
Contacts: Sarah Beckwith    

BLM Plans Prescribed Burns Throughout Bighorn Basin

The Cody and Worland field offices of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) plan to conduct prescribed burns and mechanical vegetation treatments at various locations in the Bighorn Basin this spring.

Small prescribed burns will be conducted east of Shell and north of Hwy. 14/16/20, on Little Mountain east of Lovell along the west slope of the Bighorn Mountains, in the Cottonwood Creek drainage south of Meeteetse in the Absaroka Hunter Management Area, north of Ten Sleep along the west slope of the Bighorn Mountains, and on the north fork of the Shoshone River west of Cody.

Prescribed burns create a mosaic of burned and unburned areas which improves wildlife habitat and increases forage production for livestock. Burns can reduce the hazardous build-up of fuels which lessens the probability of a severe wildfire, remove slash from mechanical vegetation treatments and reduce conifer encroachment into productive sagebrush grasslands sites.

Also planned this year are a number of mechanical vegetation treatments throughout the basin. The projects include aspen enhancement, juniper removal and Russian olive and salt cedar removal. Funding for these projects comes from a variety of public and private sources.

"In addition, sage-grouse and other wildlife species will benefit from these prescribed juniper burns and mechanical treatments," said Wind River/Bighorn Basin District Assistant Fire Management Officer Rance Neighbors. "The mosaic of small treatment patches in larger sagebrush areas and juniper removal improve nesting and early and late brood rearing habitat for sage-grouse and improves overall habitat for other sagebrush dependent species."

For more information, or to participate in the planning of prescribed burns and vegetation projects for 2012 and 2013, contact Neighbors in the Worland Field Office at 307-347-5100 or Supervisory Range Management Specialist Jack Mononi in the Cody Field Office at 307-578-5900. For more information on prescribed burning and vegetation management on public lands, visit .

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.

Wind River/Bighorn Basin District   101 South 23rd Street      Worland, WY 82401   

Last updated: 03-06-2012