Last Updated
May 9, 2016

Prescribed Burning

Prescribed burning is one of the most important management tools used by the NRMB.  There are approximately 100,000 acres on Fort Polk and Peason Ridge that are managed through prescribed burning.  As with the forest management, burning is accomplished on a rotational basis by compartments.  Compartments that are predominately longleaf pine are burned every 2 years, while predominately loblolly pine or other non-longleaf compartments are burned every 3 years. 

Benefits of regular burning include:

  • Mission Support:  Regular burning reduces wildfire intensity by reducing forest fuel build up.  This protects soldiers in the field and minimizes training down time due to fire suppression activities.
  • Environmental Stewardship:  Burning provides and maintains an ecosystem suitable for game, non-game and endangered species by promoting the natural longleaf pine forest.

Prescribed burning can be accomplished only under limited weather conditions.  Weather conditions include surface winds, air temperature, smoke transport winds, relative humidity, fuel loading, number of days since last rainfall, and the amount of fuel moisture.  In addition to the requirement that these conditions be favorable, burns must be conducted so as not to interfere with military training. 


Forest before a burn
Forest after a prescribed burn
Forest before a burn
Forest after a burn
Patrolling a fire line
Patrolling a fire line with a utility vehicle
Patrolling a fire line
Patrolling with a utility vehicle
Prescribed burning with an ATV
Spraying a dead tree
Prescribed burning with an ATV
Spraying a dead tree
Bell Ranger equipped with an aerial ignition device
Smoke settling after a burn
Bell Ranger with ignition device
Smoke settling after a burn