File photo.

Open burns planned for Horse Lake

Starting March 26 continuing periodically until June 30

The BC Wildfire Service is planning to conduct a series of open burns in the Horse Lake community, as part of the ranchettes community-forest project starting on March 26.

The piles are located at the end of Gary Road. The burning is scheduled to continue periodically until June 30.

“As a fuel-management project directed by the BC Wildfire Service, the primary intent is the mitigation of fire risk through the prescribed thinning and/or spacing of trees, and removal of excess surface fuels. In an effort to make this process more efficient, BC Wildfire Service personnel are being trained in the identification of common tree diseases,” according to a release by the BC Wildfire Service

The burning is to deal with the local impacts of the Douglas fir beetle epidemic, according to the BC Wildfire service.

“Excess fuels, after thinning and collection, must be responsibly disposed of, so the process wil work. This is usually achieved by safe pile burning. The burn piles, which are not to exceed two-by-three metres, will be burnt in strategic areas in groups of two to four. This will minimize the effect on neighbouring trees.”

They’ll also be using trap trees, which are more successful in attracting adult Douglas fir beetles than standing trees, according to the release. Adding that every trap tree can potentially protect eight to 10 healthy trees nearby. During the identification and removal process, trees with high wildlife value, such as large-diameter Douglas firs, will be retained on site.

“The pile burning will only proceed if weather conditions are favourable for quick smoke dissipation. Wind speed, direction, venting and burning conditions will all be considered prior to ignition, to prevent smoke accumulation in the community.”

To report a wildfire, unattended campfire or open burning violation, call 1 800 663-5555 toll-free, or *5555 on a cell-phone.

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