A Newsletter for the Southern Prescribed Fire Community
No. 20                                                                         May 2018
Welcome to the Driptorch Digest, 
an online newsletter for the Southern prescribed fire community. 
Please feel free to forward this newsletter to others who might be interested, and encourage them to sign up for their own subscription by clicking on the "subscribe" link at the bottom of this newsletter, or by visiting the Southeast Prescribed Fire Update blog to receive this newsletter as well as other occasional fire-related blog posts.  
NC State Extension Forestry Welcomes Laurel Kays to the Team!

Laurel Kays joined us last month as an Extension Assistant and will be working on prescribed fire projects with Jennifer Fawcett, including this Driptorch Digest newsletter. Laurel previously worked as the Forestry Project Manager for a non-profit based in the mountains of Waynesville, NC. With this organization, Laurel worked on grant-based projects with organizational partners and landowners to reduce wildfire risk. She has also worked in forestry and conservation outreach for organizations including the National Park Service, as well as in Washington, DC on technology policy issues. 

This is technically a "welcome back" as Laurel completed her M.S. in Forestry with NC State in 2017. During that time she did some student work with Forestry Extension and we are happy to have her back! 
Spotlight: Southeast Cohesive Fire Management Strategy Success Story 

Written by: Holly Campbell, Southern Regional Extension Forestry
North Carolina Fire in the Pines Festival Draws Crowd of 5,000
Photo by Angie Carl
Miss Wheelchair USA, from North Carolina in 2017, started the fire
with a driptorch as the Mayor of Wilmington pushed her alongside
the stand to be burned.

On October 14, 2017, approximately 5,000 community members attended the much-anticipated and kid-friendly Fire in the Pines festival at Halyburton Park in Wilmington, North Carolina. The festival teaches the next generation that fire can benefit the landscape if used appropriately, thus conveying the message of "good fire." The environmental education festival, in its eighth year, supports the Cohesive Fire Strategy national goal of maintaining and promoting resilient landscapes by educating the next generation on the importance of prescribed fire use and managing fire-dependent ecosystems. Read the entire story here
Prescribed Fire: 
Good  for the Birds, Good for the Bees

The benefits of prescribed fire for wildlife species such as red-cockaded woodpeckers, bobwhite quail, and gopher tortoises are well known.  A new study suggests that populations of bees, wasps, and other flower-visiting insects also benefits from fire management. Conducted in the Green River Game Lands of North Carolina, the study found that the repeated application of prescribed fire maintained increased levels of abundance and diversity of bees and other flower-visiting insects compared to untreated control plots. 

Studying the Effects of a Changing Climate on Wildfires  and the Impacts to the United States' Air Quality

Read the final report  and accompanying article on a project estimating the effects of changing climates on fires and the corresponding consequences on air quality in the United States. Major findings include that while total PM concentrations and attributable deaths are projected to decrease, the increase in fires due to changing  climates means the fire-related PM concentrations  and attributable deaths are projected to increase.
TREX Prescribed Fire Training Exchanges
Those in southern states interested in hosting a 2019 TREX should contact Jennifer Fawcett . In the meantime, check out the Training Events section for currently scheduled TREX events!
FAC Learning Network: An Example of Effective Collaboration
The Stanford Social Innovation Review's Cutting Through the Complexity: A Roadmap for Effective Collaboration cites the FAC Learning Network as an example of how working together allows participants in projects to strengthen relationships, leading to improved trust and increased action. The entire article is worth a read for ideas on how to build and improve networks that achieve results. 

Frank Riley: Farmer Gone FAC
Executive director of a local non-profit, farmer,  member of the Georgia Prescribed Fire Council steering committee; Frank Riley wears many hats. Farmer Gone FAC documents a busy day in the life of a FAC pioneer.

Wildfire Funding & the Omnibus
Check out Nature Conservancy senior policy adviser Cecilia Clavet's overview of the wildfire funding fix included in the omnibus spending package passed last month. In addition to the funding fix, several forest management policies that impact wildfire resilience were included in the package.
New Fire Science You Can Use

By David Godwin
Upcoming Webinar Schedule

The Southern Fire Exchange will host multiple webinars over the next few months on a variety of topics. While individual webinars are posted in the Webinars section, registration and additional information is not yet available for some. That information will be posted on the SFE Webinar site when available. 

Prescribed Fire Science Consortium Held at Tall Timbers Research Station

The Southern Fire Exchange was excited to support the Prescribed Fire Science Consortium collaborative research prescribed burn held from April 16-20th at Tall Timbers Research Station. During the event, over 70 top fire scientists and land managers from across the country gathered for 5 days of burning, learning, collaboration and cutting-edge research. Check out the SFE photo album from the event.
Check out the most recent edition of the SFE Fire Lines newsletter and the  CAFMS Newsletter for a variety of fire science information! 
Join the SFE email list to receive future issues of Fire Lines and other email updates.
Prescribed Fire Council Updates

Alabama Prescribed Fire Council
The ALPFC will be partnering with others to host a Learn & Burn event in on the first available burn day between June 18-22. More details coming soon!

North Carolina Prescribed Fire Council
Save the date! The North Carolina PFC will hold their annual meeting on August 2-3, 2018 in Asheboro, NC.

Louisiana Prescribed Fire Council 
Annual Meeting Thursday, October 26, 2018, 8 AM-1 PM DeWitt Livestock Facility, 100 Greg Marshall Drive, Alexandria, LA (Dean Lee Research Station/LSUA). There is no cost, but registration is requested to ensure a proper number of seating. For more information, contact Keith Hawkins, County Agent, 337-463-7006.
Virginia Prescribed Fire Council
The VAPFC will be partnering with others to host a Learn & Burn event in Wakefield in May. Full details available on the website,  CLICK HERE

Annual Meetings
Did you miss your Prescribed Fire Council meeting this fall? Did you see a presentation and want a copy of the slides? The Southern Fire Exchange has archived presentations from some of the meetings from last year. Check out the archive here.

Learn More about the Coalition of Prescribed Fire Councils, Inc.
The Coalition's core mission is to promote the appropriate use of prescribed fire for enhancing public safety, managing resources, and sustaining environment quality. In addition, the Coalition encourages and facilitates the organization of prescribed fire councils in states that lack active councils. Partnering prescribed fire councils' efforts, which collectively represent twelve million acres of annual prescribed fire use, has created a forum to voice and address issues of national concern. The Coalition's work facilitates communication among interested parties in the field of prescribed fire, provides a focal point for sharing ideas and information, and creates opportunities for prescribed fire collaboration.

Visit the Coalition's website for links to state councils, Board members, and calendar of coming events.

Check on your state's PFC website to find an event near you.
Extension Connection
Resources and stories, from and/or for
Cooperative Extension Service Faculty and Staff

Seeking Input on Upcoming Fire Programming for Extension Publication
NC State Extension will be developing a publication for extension agents on conducting programming related to wildland and prescribed fire. Input on format, content, or other aspects is encouraged and can be directed to Laurel Kays at  lekays@ncsu.edu

Teacher Education Program Includes the Hot Topic of Fire
The Forest to Classroom (F2C) professional development program was created to connect educators to forest resources in North Carolina and assist with implementing forestry education in the classroom. The June 25-28, 2018 F2C will focus on fire and is being held near the area of North Carolina impacted by 2016 wildfires. Teachers who participate will gain an understanding of fire not normally afforded to primary school educators.  Read more and apply here.

Learn & Burn Events
Are you interested in putting on a Learn & Burn field day for landowners to gain experience in burning, but not sure where to start? We will be offering a webinar on this subject this summer in conjunction with the Southern Fire Exchange.  Tell us what you would like to know about staging such an event. We will incorporate it into the webinar.

Please Log your Burns

Help improve regional data on the use of prescribed fire.
Encourage burners from any state to report their prescribed burn to the OPBA website No personal information is required and you will not be contacted or added to any list . If you have questions about this effort, please contact John Weir, Research Associate at Oklahoma State UniversityThis information is used to gather data on prescribed burns from around the country to support the use of prescribed fire. In the past this data helped to support law and policy changes, assist some burn associations with receiving grants and to help show others how safe and effective prescribed burning is.


By: Jeannie Patton, Communications Lead, The Nature Conservancy -  

Using Landsat data to identify disturbances on the landscape, the original LANDFIRE (LF) National product suite consisted of base layers mapped circa 2001. The data were updated (i.e., LF 2008, 2010, 2012, and 2014); however, thanks to the free and open Landsat archive, improvements in image compositing algorithms, plus faster, lower-cost computing hardware, many more Landsat images are being incorporated into the LF Remap effort. In preparation for the LF Remap effort, users were asked what they were looking for in the new base map products, and they responded. Read "LF Remap, Landsat, and User Input" - the last in our four-part series about Remap. 

LF frequently interviews "super users" to find out how/why/where our products are being applied. We recently spoke with Louisa Evers, Ph.D., science and climate change coordinator for the Bureau of Land Management's Oregon-Washington State Office. With 30 years' experience in fire and fuels management and fire ecology across the western U.S. in both prescribed fire and wildfire response, Louisa has concentrated on large-scale planning efforts concerning sage-grouse habitat management in eastern Oregon and forest management in western Oregon. Read LF's interview with Louisa, touching on Biophysical Settings, climate change, sage grouse habitat, fire, rangeland .... and more. 

Did you catch the March 23 "Landscape Editing" presentation from the Interagency Fuel Treatment Decision Support System (IFTDDS)? It is full of LF info: editing, transitions, modeling, comparison, and more. Watch here.

Are you receiving LANDFIRE Bulletins and Postcards directly? We post monthly: news, application stories, interviews. Click here to learn more and to subscribe.
Funding News & Opportunities

Graduate Research Innovation Grants Available from 
Joint Fire Science Program 

Applications are being accepted for masters and doctoral students studying wildland fire and related fields. Individuals may receive up to $25,000. Applications are due May 30, 2018. More information is available at the grants.gov site. 
Webinars and Videos

Upcoming Webinars

May 1, 201 - 11:30 AM ET.  Landscape Conservation Forecasting for Great Smoky Mountains National Park Presented by the Southern Blue Ridge Fire Learning Network, no pre-registration required

May 1, 2018 - 12:30 PM ET. Making it Work: How Michigan National Forests modified LANDFIRE data for local use While the webinar focuses on Michigan forests, the methods and tools can be applie d nationally.

May 10, 2018 - 1:00 PM ET Air Quality 101 for Foresters and Prescribed Burners This web inar will cover air quality topics including NAAQS, ozone, PM2.5, and nonattainment areas in the Southeast.

May 16, 2018 - 1:00 PM ET Adapting Wildfire Management to 21st Century Conditions This webinar features case studies of wildfire policy and management strategies in the western and southern US.

May 31, 2018 - 1:00 PM ET Lessons Learned from Hosting Fire Festivals This webinar will talk about lessons learned from coordinating and hosting public Fire Festivals based on the presenters' experience coordinating and hosting successful festivals in Florida and North Carolina.

TBD, 2018 - 1:00 PM ET Lessons Learned from Hosting Learn-n-Burn Events

July 19, 2018 - 1:00 PM ET The Role of Fire in Southeastern Wetlands


The Cohesive Strategy Stakeholders Perspectives features stakeholder views on the strategy's goal of reducing wildlife impacts through collaboration and partnerships. 
The Prescribed Fire Complexity Rating System Guide gives an introduction to the interagency prescribed fire complexity analysis standards established in 2017.

Videos for Landowners is an archive of short videos telling the stories of Texas landowners who are managing longleaf pine including the use of prescribed burning for vegetation control, native grass protection, and crop tree release. These videos are made possible by Texas Longleaf Taskforce through America's Longleaf Restoration Initiative.

Joint Fire Science Program (JFSP) 19 Years of Research Supporting Sound Decisions . Hosted by University of Florida IFAS.   

Learn how to use this completely revamped browser based planning and analysis tool through their  new online IFTDSS training videos

Archived Webinars

Diversity: Just gender and race...Or a diversity of perspectives?  (March 2018) Presenter: Sara Brown, USFS Human Performance & Organizational Learning Research, Development & Applications.

Editing Landscapes in the Interagency Fuel Treatment Decision Support System (March 2018) from IFTDSS Help, This webinar is for those trying to learn how to edit landscapes in IFTDSS to better represent their area.

Air Quality Planning for Wildland Smoke series  (March 2018) from Northern Arizona University includes 5 re corded webinars including content from the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals.

More previously recorded fire-related webinars can be found on the Southern Fire Exchange archived webinar page.  

Upcoming Events, Training, and Networking

Prescribed Burn Certification Courses

Louisiana:  May 8-10, 2018 - Louisiana Prescribed Fire Training,  Woodworth Outdoor Education Center .
Registration details TBD.  

Alabama:  Alabama Forestry Commission's Certified Prescribed Burn Manager Program offers courses for certification and workshops for re-certification. To register, contact Marti Davis at 34-240-9332. Seating is limited. 
  • July 30, 2018 - Auburn University, AL - Certification Course, $150 fee
  • July 31 - August 3 - Auburn University, AL - Re-certification Workshop, $100 fee
  • September 17, 2018 - Tuscaloosa, AL - Certification Course, $150 fee
  • September 18 - 21, 2018 - Tuscaloosa, AL - Re-certification Workshop, $100 fee
Mississippi: Mississippi Forestry Commission's Prescribed Burning Short Course is held twice annually and is designed for anyone wishing to become a Certified Prescribed Burn Manager in Mississippi. Details and registration/payment information are available at mfc.ms.gov/prescribed-burning-short-course
  • June 19-21, 2018 - Southern Regional Fire Training Center, Pearl, MS
  • September 18-20, 2018 - Hilton Garden Inn, Starkville, MS

Fire Festivals

May 19, 2018 - Longleaf Festival at Harris Lake County Park, New Hill, NC. See full details here!

Training Events

May 7-18, 2018 - Ashland Prescribed Fire Training Exchange / Ashland, OR. Save the date for this TREX-application information.

May 8-10, 2018 - Longleaf Academy: Longleaf 101, Lufkin, TX, hosted by Texas Longleaf Task Force. $150 registration fee. Full details and registration at www.longleafalliance.org

May 10, 2018 - Learn and Burn: Prescribed Burning on Private Lands, Wakefield, VA, Advanced registration required, $15 registration fee, full details available on the website, CLICK HERE

May 15-25, 2018 - East River Prescribed Fire Training Exchange (Session 2) / eastern SD. This training is hosted by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, South Dakota Wildland Fire Division, National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service and The Nature Conservancy. Applications are due by March 30. Information: see the flyer attached to Networker #252

May 31, 2018 - Evening Learn and Burn 5:30-8:30 PM. Topics will include converting from loblolly to longleaf, pine straw raking, pine beetle prevention, cost-share infomation, and the benefits of growing season burns.  Free with included meal with RSVP to Jesse Wimberley at jesse@sandhillslandtrust.org. Rain or shine.

June 11-15, 2018 - The Nature Conservancy will hold Basic Wildland Firefighter Training S130/190/L180 at the Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines Preserve in Bristol, FL. Contact Jack Stites at jstites@tnc.org or 850-643-2756 Ext. 212  for more information or to register. 

June 12, 2018, 9am to 5pm - S-131 Firefighter Type 1 Training, Gainesville, FL. $75 registration fee. Topics include fireline reference materials, communications, and tactical decision making. Register by May 15, limited seating.

June 12-14, 2018Longleaf Academy: Fire & Longleaf 201, Southern Pines, NC. Full details and registration at  www.longleafalliance.org

June 13-14, 2018, 9am to 5pm daily. S-215 Fire Operations in the Wildland/Urban Interface, Gainesville, FL $100 registration fee. Learn skills needed to evaluate the situation, order and deply assets, apply safe and effective tactics, minimize threat to life and property. Register by Mary 15, limited seating.

June 25-28, 2018 - Forest to Classroom: Fire Focus, Henderson County, NC. Pass this information on to  educators grades 6-12. Continuing education (CEU) for the NC Department of Public Instruction and EE Certification (Criteria II and III) credits for the NC EE Certification Program will be provided. Contact:  Renee Strnad at NC State University Extension Forestry, renee_strnad@ncsu.edu

July 17-19, 2018 -  Longleaf Academy: Fire & Longleaf 201, Webb Center, Garnett, SC. Full details and registration at  www.longleafalliance.org

Oct. 15 - Nov. 2, 2018 - Spanish-language Prescribed Fire Training Exchange / Santa Fe NF, NM. El octavo entrenamiento e intercambio en quemas prescritas en español. La fecha límite para la recepción de solicitudes es el Lunes 2 de Abril. Información: anuncio y formulario para postulantes

Oct. 29 - Nov. 9, 2018 - Southern Blue Ridge Prescribed Fire Training Exchange / Pickens, SC. Save the date for the first TREX with planned aerial ignitions to be held in the Appalachians. The base camp will be adjacent to Table Rock State Park, site of a large fall 2016 wildfire; TREX burning is planned for Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina. Save the date, registration will open soon.

OngoingFirefighter II Certification 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. This course trains these firefighters to coordinate with other resources and be good leaders - make sound tactical decisions while keeping safety their first priority.

Visit the Southern Fire Exchange Education and Training page for more opportunities. 

Conferences, Workshops & Other Events

May 5, 2018  -  National Wildfire Community Preparedness Day   Commit a couple of hours, or the entire day, and watch as your actions positively contribute to reducing your community's wildfire risk. Challenge your friends, your family, relatives, faith-based group or youth organization to develop a project and join others throughout the nation in making big changes. 

May 8-10, 2018 - Longleaf Academy: Longleaf 101, Texas Forest Service in Lufkin, TX. Training will combine class room and tours of east Texas longleaf stands providing an excellent foundation for understanding the unique attributes of the longleaf pine / fire ecosystem. $150 advanced registration required.

May 15-17, 2018 - Southern Blue Ridge Fire Learning Network 2018 Workshop will be held in Pickens, SC at the Table Rock Wesleyan Camp and Retreat Center. Optional arrival date of May 14.

May 21-24, 2018 - The Fire Continuum Conference, University of Montana, Missoula, MT.  Visit the conference website here, and click the image to the right for full details. 

Oct. 23-26, 2018 - The Longleaf Alliance, Alexandria, LA. The nd biennial Longleaf Alliance regional conference is  scheduled to take place at the Holiday Inn Conference Center in Alexandria, LA., October 24 through 26, 2018. Visit this link for more details. 

Visit the Southern Fire Exchange for more listings of conferences, webinars, workshops and field tours here .

Web-based Resources and Tools
Job Postings

Fire Ecology Program 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.

Wildland Restoration International (WRI) Job Announcements:
WRI is currently recruiting conservation-minded, NWCG-qualified staff for the following prescribed fire and ecosystem restoration team positions. These positions are to be filled immediately.


Southeastern U.S.

Please  visit their website for more information and application instructions.  WRI also has a subscription option that will notify you by email of job announcements and training opportunities.

The Nature Conservancy  has numerous fire-related positions open. For details, visit the  careers page  and search "prescribed fire."

Online Job Boards: 

Partner Newsletters
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)


Driptorch Digest

This newsletter is hosted by the Southeast Regional Partnership for Planning & Sustainability (SERPPAS) Prescribed Fire Work Group. 
Share your prescribed fire
 information, stories, and events!

Jennifer Fawcett - Extension Associate
SERPPAS Prescribed Fire Work Group Coordinator 
NC State University, Extension Forestry
Campus Box 8008
Raleigh, NC 27695-8008

Laurel Kays - Extension Assistant
NC State University, College of Natural Resources
Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources
Campus Box 8008
Raleigh, NC 27695-8008