The Rocky Mountain Trench Ecosystem Restoration Program in conjunction with the BC Wildfire Service and ʔaq̓am Band are planning to conduct a prescribed burn in the Wycliffe/Meadowbrook area between April 24 and April 30, 2018, weather and burning conditions permitting. A tentative scheduled date for the burn is Thursday April 26, but this is entirely weather-dependent and can change at any moment. Prescribed burns are only initiated when professionals are confident in proper weather conditions.
Prescribed burns are being conducted for ecosystem restoration purposes and will occur on Indian Springs Pasture and ʔaq̓am Reservation located north and east of Wycliffe, BC and south of Meadowbrook, approximately 12 km north of the St Eugene Mission on the Mission Road (see the proposed burn area location map on back). The burn area proposed is for a total of approximately 700 hectares.
Historically, the forests in the Rocky Mountain Trench were renewed through frequent, low intensity ground fires. Such fires removed the shrubby understory and created a relatively open forest with large, healthy trees. The exclusion of fire from the landscape over recent decades has increased the fuels that contribute to the risk of more intense and damaging fires; and reduced the amount of grasslands and open forests in the Rocky Mountain Trench. Combined with other factors, the resulting forest ingrowth has caused an overall deterioration in wildlife habitat, cattle forage and other forest values.
The reintroduction of low-intensity ground fires to these forests is intended to maintain and restore the fire maintained, Douglas fir, fescue grass community that is the natural condition for these sites.
These fires are part of an ongoing restoration program with the BC Provincial Government in partnership with many non-government organizations.