A Newsletter for the Southern Prescribed Fire Community
No. 45
June 2020
COVID-19 News
As the COVID-10 pandemic continues to play out, the following information and resources related to COVID-19 may be useful to the Southern prescribed fire community.

Extension Connection
ANREP Conference Rescheduled
The Association of Natural Resources Extension Professionals biennial conference originally scheduled for May 2020 will now take place May 23-26, 2021 in Corvallis, OR. Conference updates will continue to be posted on the original conference website.

NEWFI Quarterly Meeting
The National Extension Wildland Fire Initiative will hold its quarterly meeting via Zoom on July 7 at 2:00 PM ET. The meeting will feature brief presentations on emerging wildland fire Extension projects in Pennsylvania and Florida, as well as discussions of how wildland fire programming is being adapted online due to the pandemic. Registration is required.

New Publication on Wildland Fire Smoke
Researchers including Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service faculty John Weir recently published an article in Fire Ecology on the potential policy and health implications of wildland fire smoke in the Great Plains.
North Carolina Updates Smoke Management Program Guidelines

The updated North Carolina Smoke Management Program Guidelines has been released. Significant changes include smoke models being made available to all certified burners, and changes to burning categories.
2019 Longleaf Range-Wide Accomplishment Report Released
America's Longleaf Restoration Initiative has released the 2019 Range-wide Accomplishment Report. The report details over 1.7 million acres of accomplishments, including more than 1.4 million acres of prescribed burning for longleaf.
Opportunities to Provide Input

Several entities are soliciting input on topics that may be of interest to the Southern prescribed fire community:

  • A team of wildland fire and environmental education professionals are adapting the FireWorks curriculum for the Southeast. The curriculum is based on an encyclopedia of species, which is currently in development. If you would like to assist in reviewing that encyclopedia, or otherwise be involved in the FireWorks effort, contact Laurel Kays.
Sandhills Prescribed Burn Association Updated Landowner Materials

The Sandhills Prescribed Burn Association has revised several of their materials:

Florida Wildfires

An escaped prescribed fire in the pandhandle of Florida in early May became a large wildfire. The Five Mile Swamp fire ultimately destroyed at least 14 homes. Below are some of the news stories from that fire and other recent wildfires in Florida:

Bigfoot: Believe in Fire Safety

Oregon's new wildfire prevention campaign features Bigfoot (or Skunk Ape, as we in the South know it!). The campaign targets those living in the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI), and features downloadable images for posters, social media, coloring pages, t-shirts, computer and mobile phone backgrounds, and more!
AFE Launches New Fuels Certification
The Association for Fire Ecology Professional Certification Subcommittee has announced five new certifications for those working in wildland fuels:
  • Wildland Fuels Technician
  • Wildland Fuels Manager
  • Senior Wildland Fuels Manager
  • Wildland Fuels Scientist
  • Senior Wildland Fuels Scientist

Certification applications are due by September 1.
Piedmont Prairie Trail

The Piedmont Prairie Partnership is compiling a map of publicly accessible Piedmont Prairies. Prairies can be entered for inclusion in the map, with the intention of the map becoming a Piedmont Prairie Trail available for recreation. Find a prairie near you!
Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network

New Blog Posts:
The Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network publishes a variety of content related to fire adaptation. The following recent posts may be of interest to the prescribed fire community:

Southern Fire Exchange

Remote and Online Fire Training Resources
In response to COVID-19, SFE has compiled a list of online training resources that can be accessed for little or no cost.

Upcoming Webinars and Recent Recordings
SFE has three currently scheduled webinars. Registration is free but required for each.

Sharon Bischof, North Carolina State Parks
Dr. Chris Moorman, NC State University
Dr. Dan Dey, US Forest Service Northern Research Station
June 10, 1:00 PM

June 17, 1:00 PM ET

Kevin Robertson, Ph.D., Tall Timbers Research Station
June 24, 1:00 PM ET
All SFE webinars, including the recent Longleaf Pine Forest Patch Dynamics and Case for Prescribed Fire Science webinars, are recorded. Recordings are available to watch anytime on the SFE YouTube channel.
Oak Woodlands & Forests Fire Consortium

Current River Pinery Tour
A self-guided tour of the Current River Pinery includes four stops which describe the history, ecology, and social benefits of fire-adapted shortleaf pine-oak woodlands. Podcast episodes can be accessed online, or via a QR code at each stop.

April 2020 Newsletter
The latest edition of the Consortium newsletter includes a variety of useful resources, including a research highlight summarizing a recent review of literature on the influence of prescribed fire on wild turkeys in the Southeast.
Prescribed Fire News Roundup
Funding Opportunities
Close-up of $100 bills
Renewable Resources Extension Act National Focus Fund Projects
The USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture is accepting proposals from land-grant institutions for pilot projects that (1) Address emerging forest and rangeland resource issues, (2) Have national or regional relevancy, or (3) Develop new and innovative projects that can be replicated at other institutions. Applications will be accepted through June 28.

Urban Agriculture and Innovation Production Grant
The USDA has announced $3 million for grants through its new Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production. The competitive grants will support the development of urban agriculture and innovative production projects. An applicant webinar will be held on June 3 at 2:00 PM ET and all applications are due by midnight July 6.

NFWF ConocoPhillips SPIRIT of Conservation Program
The ConocoPhillips SPIRIT of Conservation program invites applications for competitive grant funding to be awarded through the 2020 funding cycle. The purpose of this funding is to restore grassland, wetland, sage-steppe, and coastal habitats for birds; protect key habitats for birds; and provide technical assistance to improve bird habitat conservation practices on working lands, with an emphasis in focal geographies. Pre-proposals are due by June 19, 11:59 PM ET, and full proposals are due August 7.

Association for Fire Ecology Funding Opportunities
The Association for Fire Ecology (AFE) has two ongoing funding opportunities:

  • Wayne Harrison Memorial Scholarship - Students may apply for up to $2,500, with funding available annually. Applications are due each year by March 31, with awards announced by May 31.
  • Joint Fire Science Program (JFSP) TREE Grants - Designed to help graduate students travel to present at conferences and workshops related to fire science and management, applications are due 60 days before the conference or workshop.
Job Postings
All jobs are open as of the Driptorch Digest send date, however application reviews may have begun.

North Carolina Sandhills ORISE Fellowing - The Nature Conservancy is seeking candidates for one Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) Fellow stationed in the Conservation Center of the Sandhills located in Southern Pines, NC. This appointment will assist the TNC and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to accomplish the mission of the North Carolina Sandhills Conservation Partnership (Partnership). Eligible candidates must have graduated with a natural resources related degree within three years of the hiring date.  Applications are due by June 4.

Assistant Professor of Forest Health and Fire Protection - Alabama A&M University is hiring for a nine-month academic appointment with additional three-month summer employment available and expected. Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis.

Veterans Fire Corps - The Student Conservation Association is accepting applications from post-9/11-era US military veterans for its Fire Corps internships. Additional information and the application portal can be found on the  program website.

Fire Ecology Internships - The Fire Ecology Program at Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy in Tallahassee, FL seeks to provide field and laboratory experience for college students and recent graduates in the areas of plant ecology, ecosystem ecology, and fire ecology and science. Most internships last 12-16 weeks and are largely fieldwork based. Summer interns work from May-August and Fall interns work from October-December.   Get full details and application instructions here.

Online Job Boards 
Webinars, Video, and Other Media
Upcoming Webinars

Recent Archived Webinars

More recorded webinars on a variety of wildland fire-related topics can be found on the Southern Fire Exchange webinar page, the Oak Woodlands and Forests Fire Consortium webinar page, and the Consortium of Appalachian Fire Managers and Scientists webinars and presentations page .
Podcasts & Radio

Podcast Series

  • Predictive Services Weather and Fuels - Available from the National Predictive Services program in Boise, these podcasts will be available through October 1.
  • Eyes on Earth - Covers remote sensing, with an episode on wildfire risk to communities.
  • Good Fire Podcast - Covers the indigenous use of "good fire" is used around the globe.
  • Learn, Baby, Burn - Created by the Michigan Prescribed Fire Council, this podcast will cover a variety of prescribed fire topics.
  • The Fire Learning Trail - Introduces listeners to the role of fire in the Southern Appalachians, wildland firefighting, and local history
  • On The Line - Covers topics of interest to wildland firefighters, including mental health, the pack test, and health considerations.
  • Forest Voices - Covers forest stewardship and management topics, including prescribed fire.

Past single podcasts and other resources can be found here.
Upcoming Events
Please note that this section is current to the best of our knowledge as of the sending of this newsletter. If you are interested in attending an event listed as still scheduled, contact organizers to ensure they still plan to host it.

Prescribed Fire Council Meetings

Prescribed Burner Certification Courses

  • Alabama - Certification and re-certification courses are offered through the Alabama Forestry Commission Certified Burn Manager Program. The following courses are currently scheduled.
  • July 6, Auburn University, AL (Re-certification course)
  • July 7-10, Auburn University, AL
  • August 10, Tuscaloosa, AL (Re-certification course)
  • August 11-14, Tuscaloosa, AL

  • Kentucky - Courses are offered periodically. No courses currently scheduled.

  • Louisiana - Courses are offered through LSU Cooperative Extension Service. No courses are currently scheduled.

  • Mississippi - The Mississippi Forestry Commission offers a Prescribed Burning Short Course. One course is currently scheduled.
  • September 15-17, Starkville, MS

Conferences, Workshops, Festivals and Other Events

  • September 15-16 - SERPPAS Principals Meeting, Virtual

  • May 2021 - Southern Blue Ridge FLN Meeting, Dillard, GA

  • June 7-10, 2021 - Southern Group of State Foresters Annual Meeting, Oklahoma City, OK

  • Ongoing - Fire in the Field, This intermediate firefighter training program (equivalent to NWCG S-131, S-133, and S-231 courses, as well as the G-131 course) is designed to prepare the Firefighter 2 (FFT2) to move to the Firefighter 1 (FFT1) position. 

Postponed due to COVID-19, new date TBD
  • Longleaf Academy, Lumberton, NC
Partner Newsletters
Find more fire-related information from our friends & partners!

Consortium of Appalachian Fire Managers & Scientists Newsletter ( current edition )
Department of Defense Natural Selections Newsletter  ( current edition )
Fire Learning Network  Networker  ( current edition )
Forest Stewards Guild After Wildfire: News & Networking ( current edition  and  subscription link )
Gulf Coastal Plains & Ozarks LCC Newsletter ( current edition )
Joint Fire Science Program  Fire Science Digest  ( current and archived editions )
LANDFIRE Bulletin & Post Card  ( current edition and subscription form   )
Partners for Conservation News ( current news and subscription form )
REPI Program Newsletter ( current edition and subscription form )
SERPPAS Circular ( current edition )
South Atlantic LCC Newsletter ( current edition )
Southeast Region Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy  ( current edition   )
Southern Fire Exchange  Firelines  Newsletter  ( current edition and subscription link )
Tall Timbers  eNews  and  eJournal
Wildland Fire Lessons Learned Center Two More Chains  ( current edition )
Contact us to share your prescribed fire information, stories, or events!

Jennifer Fawcett
NC State Extension Forestry
Extension Associate
SERPPAS Prescribed Fire Working Group Coordinator

Laurel Kays
NC State Extension Forestry
Extension Assistant

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