Pheasants Forever and the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission (NGPC) will be hosting an advanced prescribed fire workshop at the Country Café in Niobrara on January 23.
Workshop speakers familiar with fire will discuss how it can be used to benefit the land manager’s objectives and discuss the challenges of Eastern Red Cedar encroachment.
Fire has shaped Nebraska’s landscape for thousands of years, however during the 20th century we became very proficient in its suppression and prevention.
According to Pheasants Forever Biologist Brian Teeter, this lack of fire has resulted in negative consequences in the health and diversity of our prairies and forests which are critical to our wildlife and agricultural economy.
“You don’t have to travel very far to see that the eastern red cedar is rapidly expanding and is negatively affecting our grazing lands but there are also less obvious benefits that range from improving wildlife habitat to increasing forage quality,” Teeter noted.
In recent years however, the state has seen an increase in the use of prescribed fire on private lands, something Teeter is excited to see.
“We strongly believe that returning fire to our landscape is imperative and we have recognized the need for proper training and education in regards to safely implementing the practice.”
Pheasants Forever along with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission responded to this interest by setting up workshops across the state to help educate and train participants about the benefits and implementation of prescribed burning.
The advanced workshop runs from 10:30am to 3:00pm covering the challenges and strategies for Northeast Nebraska cattle producers in dealing with eastern red cedar trees and the use of landscape-level prescribed fire.
A $10 registration fee covers all training and training materials, refreshments, and a noon meal.
Attendees are asked to please pre-register to reserve a meal. Please contact Ashley at 308-850-8395 or visit www.NebraskaPF.com to register.
Pheasants Forever works closely with NGPC, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the Nebraska Environmental Trust and other conservation partners to help Nebraskans plan prescribed fires.
Since 2008, they have hosted 92 workshops with a total of 2,053 attendees.