A Newsletter for the Southern Prescribed Fire Community
No. 26                                                                        November 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.  

Southeast Cohesive Fire Management Strategy 

Videos Highlight Importance of Florida Scrub Habitat Management at Archbold Biological Station 

Written By: Holly Campbell, Southern Regional Extension Forestry, and Jennifer Brown, Dr. Betsie Rothermel, and Dr. Hilary Swain, Archbold Biological Station
Screenshot from The Queen of Red Hill
Photo Credit: Into Nature Films
Archbold Biological Station is a non-profit, independent research station dedicated to long-term ecological research. Scientists and students focus their research on the organisms and ecosystem of the 8,870-acre Archbold Biological Station and nearby conservation lands on the Lake Wales Ridge, which together protect globally unique Florida scrub habitats. Two outstanding videos were recently produced by Into Nature Films that highlight ecosystem and prescribed fire management at the Station.  The first details the importance of fire management in Florida scrub habitat, while the second features  a 60+ year old gopher tortoise named the Queen of Red Hill. 

Longleaf Pine on the Kisatchie National Forest
Photo Credit: Laurel Kays
12th Biennial Longleaf Conference Celebrates Past Work and Plans for the Future

The 12th Biennial Longleaf Conference was held in Alexandria, LA October 23-26. A field tour to the Kistachie National Forest and a private landowner's property gave attendees the opportunity to learn about longleaf management on the western end of the longleaf range. The conference also provided an opportunity to reflect on the hard work done to restore longleaf across the region and to look to the future as that work continues. At the conference, Quail Forever and the Longleaf Alliance announced that they have established a partner commitment by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOA), setting the stage for future projects to restore and manage longleaf forests.
Phil Dye in the field
Photo Credit: Phil Dye
Prescribed Fire Contractor Discusses Success and Challenges 

The latest blog post on the Southeast Prescribed Fire Update features an interview with prescribed fire contractor Phil Dye of Prometheus Fire Consulting LLC. Phil discusses his background in wildland fire, the challenges and advantages he has experienced, and advice for those considering a similar career path. 
Article Highlights the Partnerships of America's Longleaf Restoration Initiative 

The latest edition of the Longleaf Leader features a deep dive into the many partners that have contributed to longleaf restoration efforts since the 1990's. Discussion of the contributions of government agencies, private companies, non-profit organizations, universities, and individuals highlights not only the valuable work that has been done but the potential and high hopes for the future. 
Smoke Sense Citizen Science Project

A mobile app is being used by EPA researchers to gather citizen science on the human health impacts of wildfire smoke. Researchers hope to use the data to better understand not only how wildfire smoke impacts human health, but how people protect themselves from smoke exposure and how to effectively communicate health risks from wildfire smoke. The app and associated study were also featured in a recent Wired article.
National Wild Turkey Federation Issues Prescribed Fire Position Statement

In a recently issued position statement, the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF) stated that prescribed fire is an important part of the active habitat management that is central to maintaining healthy, sustainable, and huntable wild turkey populations. NWTF notes that while prescribed fires may occasionally cause unintended consequences, such as burning a larger than intended area, that "is an expected trade-off that still produces better habitat than not using prescribed fire at all." Read the full statement and supporting research here.
Extension Connection
Resources and stories, from and/or for
Cooperative Extension Service Faculty and Staff

New Extension  Wildland Fire Initiative 
The Association of Natural Resources Extension Professionals (ANREP) has designated a new Wildland Fire initiative. This initiative will aim to connect Extension professionals working on wildland fire issues to each other as well as to the broader wildland fire community. More information on initiative projects and goals will be available soon. In the meantime,  Extension professionals interested in learning more about opportunities t o become involved  or fire professionals looking to better connect with their local Extension presence can contact  Jennifer Fawcett  or  Laurel Kays

Extension Disaster Education Network Conference 
From October 15-18, approximately 100 Extension professionals from around the country gathered to discuss Extension's role in disaster preparedness, response, and recovery at the Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN) annual conference in College Station, Texas. Several presentations highlighted current Extension efforts in wildland fire education and outreach, including efforts in Oklahoma to increase prescribed fire use. Learn more about EDEN on their website

Be Featured on the Southeast Prescribed Fire Update
The  latest Southeast Prescribed Fire Update blog post is an interview with prescribed fire contractor Phil Dye. If you have a project, job, or story you would like to be featured on the blog,  contact us!

Southern Fire Exchange

SFE Outreach Coordinator Changes
Southern Fire Exchange thanks Leslie Boby for all her work as Outreach Coordinator! Leslie will be focusing full-time on her work with Southern Regional Extension Forestry.  Laurel Kays of NC State Extension Forestry will serve as the new Outreach Coordinator. Thank you Leslie and welcome Laurel!
Learn and Burn Webinar Rescheduled 
The Lessons Learned from Learn-n-Burn Events webinar postponed due to Hurricane Michael has been rescheduled for November 29th at 1:00 PM ET.  The webinar will cover best practices and lessons learned from hosting "learn and burn" workshops on prescribed fire for private landowners. Register at learnnburn.eventbrite.com

New Fact Sheet Released: Online Tools for Planning Smoke Management
A new fact sheet covers the different online tools available for smoke management through the AirFire site. Read the full fact sheet here.

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.
Joint Fire Science Program

Estimating the Effects of Changing Climate on Fires and Consequences for US Air Quality
The final report for this Joint Fire Science Program (JFSP) funded project is now available. In part, the study found that PM 2.5 concentrations over North America are predicted to increase significantly as a result of increased fire activity. These increases in fire-related emissions could offset benefits from reductions in anthropogenic PM 2.5 and significantly affect future ozone air quality. 
Diversity in Fire and Fire Science

Association for Fire Ecology Diversity and Inclusivity Committee 
The Association for Fire Ecology (AFE) has established a Diversity and Inclusivity Committee to focus on efforts to promote and recognize diversity, equity, and inclusivity. The full charter of the Committee is available on the AFE website

Editorial Recognizes Women Leaders in Fire Science
An editorial in Fire recognized women leaders working in the fire science field in an effort to contribute to expanding the role and influence of women and other underrepresented groups in the fire science field. 

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

Teaching the Next Generation of LANDFIRE Users
"I love to learn almost as much as I love teaching," says Heather Heward, Senior Fire Instructor at the University of Idaho. "I am passionate about fire education and enjoy seeing the fire in my students as they learn about how they can make a difference in the broader world of fire ecology and management." Read how Heather is teaching the next generation of LANDFIRE users in her "Prescribed Burning Lab," "Fire and Fuel Modeling," and "GIS Applications in Fire Ecology and Management" courses. If you've been reading LANDFIRE postcards, you know that we feature "Next Gen" users frequently. Know of an up-and-comers?

LANDFIRE Remap Production on Schedule 
The comprehensive mapping effort to create a new base map data suite representing 2016  ground conditions will be released incrementally, starting in early 2019. Remap is designed to produce vegetation and fuels data that inform wildland fire and ecological decision systems. By using consistent methodologies and processes, and incorporating current satellite imagery, contemporary data sources, user contributed field plot data, and the latest software and hardware technologies, the resulting LF Remap products will offer significant improvements to all previous versions. More info about Remap can be found on the LF website.
Tall Timbers Research Station & Land Conservancy 

Fall eJournal Available 
The Fall 2018 edition of the Tall Timbers eJournal is now available. Articles cover topics including fuel moisture dynamics in a humid enivronment and an interview with Thomasville, Georgia land manager Terry Butler.
Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network

Why Oregon is Exploring a New Smoke Management Plan
A recent post from the FAC Learning Network blog details Oregon's ongoing efforts to revise their smoke management plan to maximize the use of prescribed fire while minimizing the amount of smoke that enters "Smoke Sensitive Receptor Areas (SSRAs)." SSRAs include areas with relatively dense populations, such as cities. 

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 University

This 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.
Funding News & Opportunities

Department of Defense Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) Seeks Proposals 
SERDP is seeking proposals for funding beginning in Fiscal Year 2020. Projects will be selected through a competitive process. The SERDP  Executive and Deputy Directors will host an online seminar on November 13th, 2018 from 1:00-3:30 PM ET for those interested. Program and webinar information can be found on the SERDP website

Assistance Available for Prescribed Fire and Habitat Management in North Florida  
Wildland Restoration International is available to help public and private landowners and land managers in Florida with prescribed fire and habitat management.  WRI is specifically reaching out to private landowners receiving cost share funding from NRCS for prescribed burning who need help getting their contracts completed.  Landowners are eligible in the counties of Levy, Alachua, Putnam, Marion, Flagler, Volusia, Lake, Sumter, Hernando, Polk, Osceola, Manatee, Hardee, and Highlands.   If you are interested, contact WRI Fire Program Coordinator Ryan Kennelly at  ryan.kennelly@wildlandrestoration.org  or 352-373-0550.

Travel, Research, and Educational Experience (TREE) Grants
The Association for Fire Ecology (AFE) will distribute Joint Fire Science Program (JFSP) TREE grants. These are 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 start of the event the applicant would like to attend. Additional information and application link are available on the AFE website

Additional information on funding opportunities is available at the grants.gov site. 
Webinars, Videos, and Other Media

Upcoming Webinars
Archived Webinars
  • Produced by the Joint Fire Science Program, Wildland Fire Education & Training Collaborative (WETC), Southwest Fire Science Consortium, and Northern Arizona University,  this new video  gives an overview of the goals and methods of wildland fuel management, including prescribed fire. 
  • Archbold Biological Station's Vimeo channel has many beautifully shot videos showcasing the diversity of Florida scrub habitats, many of which prominently feature the importance of prescribed fire in maintaining that habitat and diversity. 
  • 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.
Podcasts & Radio

Podcast Series
  • The Fire Learning Trail - An enhanced interpretive trail with locations throughout the  Southern Appalachians, the trail's podcast-style audio tour segments are available online.  
  • On The Line - A podcast for wildland firefighters, many episodes cover issues of interest to prescribed fire professionals.
  • Forest Voices - A podcast showcasing the diverse community of stakeholders in forest stewardship. Many episodes focus on fire and fire management. 
Single Episodes
  • Outside Podcast Episode: The Future of Fire - Prominently featuring the success of prescribed fire in Florida, this podcast explores the many factors hindering the use of prescribed fire to address fire issues in the West, and the possible solutions. 
  • Perspectives: Prescribed Burns - Kevin Hiers and Dr. Kevin Robertson (Tall Timbers) and Dr. David Godwin (Southern Fire Exchange at the University of Florida) join WFSU in Tallahassee, FL to discuss issues surrounding prescribed fire.
  • Got Science Episode: The Science of Forest Fires -  Oregon State University Professor John Bailey discusses controlled burning, forest management, and other fire-related issues. 
  • 99% Invisible Episode: Built to Burn - An excellent overview of how the wildland-urban interface, home construction, and other factors contribute to wildfire issues. Prominently features Dr. Jack Cohen and his research.

Upcoming Events, Training, and Networking

Prescribed Fire Burn Certification Courses
Alabama:  Alabama Forestry Commission's Certified Prescribed Burn Manager Program offers courses for certification and workshops for re-certification. For more information, contact Marti Davis at 34-240-9332. 

Florida: The Florida Forest Service offers its Certified Prescribed Burn Manager Training Course in distance learning and classroom formats.The distance learning version is intended for those with direct experience on three or more burns. The classroom version is offered in three and four day formats. There are currently seven scheduled courses that will be held on various dates and locations. The program website has details on dates, locations, and registration.

Georgia: The Georgia Forestry Commission offers a two-day training certification course for prescribed burners. The only currently scheduled course will take place on December 4-5 in Tifton, GA. Registration and additional information is posted on the program website.

Louisiana: Louisiana will hold a prescribed burning workshop and burner certification December 6-8, 2018 at the Bob R. Jones Idlewild Research Station in Clinton, LA. Cost is $100/person and details are available here.

Mississippi: Mississippi Forestry Commission's Prescribed Burning Short Course is held three times annually and is designed for anyone wishing to become a Certified Prescribed Burn Manager in Mississippi. While no course is currently scheduled, information on the next available course will be posted when available

North Carolina: The 2018 October Certified Burner Training course has been postponed. The course will likely be held in February 2019. For details when available and additional information on requirements for North Carolina Certified Burners, visit the program website

South Carolina: The South Carolina Forestry Commission Certified Prescribed Fire Manager course is a one-day course with a registration cost of $50. Dates and locations are listed below and additional information can be found on the program website
  • November 7, 2018 - Columbia, SC
  • November 28, 2018 - Moncks Corner, SC
  • January 9, 2019 - Columbia, SC

Fire Festivals
January 26, 2019 - Flatwoods Fire and Nature Festival, Austin Cary Forest, Gainesville, Florida. More information is available on the Facebook event page

Training Events
November 10, 2018 - 10:00 AM-12:00 PM, Sandhills Prescribed Burn Association Fall Forestry Tour, 1295 McNeil Lake Rd, Lumber Bridge, NC 28357. Email Jesse Wimberley or call 910-603-1052 for additional information.

November 17, 2018 - 10:00 AM-12:00 PM, Sandhills Prescribed Burn Association Fall Forestry Tour, 845 McKloskey Rd, Fayettville, NC 28311. Email Jesse Wimberley or call 910-603-1052 for additional information.

December 4-6, 2018  -  Longleaf Academy: Longleaf 101 , Georgetown, SC.  

Various Dates, 2019 - The National Interagency Prescribed Fire Training Center (PFTC) in Tallahassee, FL is accepting applications through October 15, 2018 for FY2019 sessions. 

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
November 9-16, 2018 - International Conference on Forest Fire Research, Coimbra, Portugal. Registration can be found here .

December 6, 2018 - Southern Blue Ridge Escarpment Fire Learning Network, TBA. Details and an agenda will be released after November 12.

December 11, 2018 - Georgia Blue Ridge Mountains Fire Learning Network, Dahlonega, GA. More details coming soon.

December 10-14, 2018 - International Wildland Fire Safety Summit and 5th Human Dimensions of Wildland Fire Conference, Asheville, NC. Registration information and other conference details can be found here.

February 7, 2019 - North Georgia Prescribed Fire Council Meeting, Jasper, GA. More details coming soon.

March 12-14, 2019 - Southern Silvicultural Research Conference, Shreveport, LA. The 20th biennial conference will begin accepting registrations November 1st, 2018. Visit the conference website for additional updates and details. 

April 29-May 3, 2019 - Fire Behavior and Fuels Conference, Albuquerque, NM. Call for Papers open through October 31, 2018. Additional information available on the conference website

July 23-25, 2019 - Fire in the Eastern Oak Forest, State College, PA. More information will be available soon. 

October 21-24, 2019 - Cohesive Strategy Workshop, Plymouth, MA. More information will be on the workshop website when available. 

November 18-22, 2019
Interna tional Fire Ecology and Management Congress, Tucson, AZ. More information  will be available soon.

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

All job postings are still open as of the Driptorch Digest send date, however application reviews may have begun. 
  • Land Management Technician -The Orianne Society is hiring a land management technician to work on land management operations and maintenance, including wildland fire management. The position will last from January 1, 2019 to June 30, 2019. Applications are due by November 18.
  • Integrated Fire and Recreation Internship Program - The Student Conservation Association and US Forest Service Southern Region have partnered to administer this internship designed to to provide college graduates from under-represented and diverse backgrounds with opportunities to gain the skills necessary to launch a career in fire, recreation or natural resource management. While applications are accepted rolling basis priority is given to those submitted by October 15. Additional information on the positions and application process can be found here
  • 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.
  • 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. 
Contact us to 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