A Newsletter for the Southern Prescribed Fire Community
No. 36
September 2019
Southeast Regional Partnership for Planning and Sustainability

SE Fire Map Project Selects Technical Oversight Team
The SE Fire Map is a new effort to develop fire mapping in the Southeastern U.S., funded by the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). As an improved, cohesive system to track both prescribed fire and wildfire activity on public and private lands, it will serve as a critical decision support tool to maximize the effectiveness of fire management practices – helping achieve the varied objectives of NRCS and its partners such as keeping working lands working, restoring the longleaf pine ecosystem, supporting DoD’s military and training mission, conserving listed and at-risk species, managing for wildfire risk, and minimizing the need to conserve species through regulation. USDA has selected eleven representatives to serve on the project's Technical Oversight Team. This team of experts represent diverse affiliations and will serve as as advisory body to the project.

The SE Fire Map is a priority project of SERPPAS' Southeast Prescribed Fire Initiative. An RFP was released in July by the U.S. Endowment for the scoping phase of the project, and final applications are currently under review.

Recent and Upcoming SERPPAS Meetings
A full summary of the 2019 SERPPAS Principal's Meeting that was held June 4-5 at Fort Rucker, AL is now available.

The fall Steering Committee Meeting will take place in Atlanta, GA September 9-10. Full details are available on the event's page on the SERPPAS website.
Key Stakeholders around National Forests in Region 8 Needed

North Carolina State University is partnering with USDA Forest Service (USFS) Region 8 and Nighthawk Consulting to gauge external stakeholder perceptions of the USFS Region 8 prescribed burning program.

To ensure that we are reaching as many key stakeholders as possible (such as current partners, unreached individuals and organizations, critics, etc.) whose perspectives are important to specific National Forests and/or the Region 8 prescribed burning program as a whole, we are asking for contact information to be submitted here .
Names submitted through this form will be contacted to ask their opinion on various aspects of the Region 8 prescribed burning program. Those with questions about this project or who wish to submit contacts directly can contact Laurel Kays at  lekays@ncsu.edu  or 919-513-2573.
Prescribed Burn Contractor Databases

Do you know someone who needs their land burned, but don't know who to call? The Southeast Prescribed Fire Update's Prescribed Burn Contractor Databases page has been updated to now include a link to a list of prescribed burn vendors for each southern state; for some states it also links to an online vendor database maintained by the state's forestry agency if one is available.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) have begun a large-scale research project called Fire Influence on Regional to Global Environments and Air Quality (FIREX-AQ) to study smoke from wildfires and prescribed fires. Hundreds of scientists will explore the chemistry of trace gases and aerosols in smoke with the goal of improving weather and air quality models and providing better forecasts to first responders, public health, and land management officials. The project will include sampling emissions from prescribed fires in the South.

Image: A smoke column from a wildfire burning on Bureau of Indian Affairs land
Credit: weathernationtv.com
Prescribed Fire Insurance Survey

The Forest Stewards Guild is conducting a survey in order to better understand prescribed fire insurance needs and potential solutions. The survey is intended primarily for private consultants and organizations (NGOs or otherwise). Survey findings will be shared will be shared with those interested, and full information on the survey can be found on the project website.
Prescribed Burn Comic Story

Comic website The Nib published a comic story by Xulin Wang illustrating the importance and history of prescribed fire. While focused on Canadian boreal forests, the comic touches on many points that hold true for Southeastern ecosystems.

Image: Exceprt from the Prescribed Burn comic by Xulin Wang
Credit: Xulin Wang, The Nib
White Oak Initiative Launches Website

The White Oak Initiative has launched a new website. The site includes information on the Initiative's mission, actions, and ways to become involved. The Initiative is currently in the process of developing a range-wide conservation assessment and plan.
Duke Energy and Harris Lake County Park Receive North Carolina Longleaf Honor Roll Award
The N.C. Longleaf Coalition has jointly recognized Duke Energy and Harris Lake County Park as part of the N.C. Longleaf Honor Roll. The recognition was presented for their efforts in managing longleaf pine with prescribed fire. The park also hosts the annual Longleaf Festival, a family-friendly event that mixes fun with education about the significance of longleaf pine ecosystems in North Carolina.

Image: North Carolina Forest Service staff with the recipients of the Longleaf Honor Roll
Credit: North Carolina Forest Service
High Country Landscape Project Team Formed
More than 20 partners from the New River Headwaters and Northern Escarpment landscapes in the Southern Blue Ridge Fire Learning Network have decided to merge to form the new High Country landscape project team. Partners have outlined burn and restoration plans, challenges, and where collaboration is needed. Moving forward, partners will plan to coordinate resources and outreach, including plans for a "Fire 101" prescribed fire workshop for private landowners. Those interested in additional information on the project can contact Adam Warwick or Jonathan Hartsell.
Extension Connection
First NEWFI Web Meeting for Extension & Outreach Professionals
The National Extension Wildland Fire Initiative will host it's first quarterly web meeting this Thursday, September 5 from 2-3pm EST.

Join Extension professionals to learn about this newly developed wildland fire initiative, and how Cooperative Extension is and can be involved in wildland fire programming across the nation. There will be time to discuss how NEWFI can best serve your needs and help expand Extension's involvement in wildland fire programming. Registration is required, register here.

ANREP 2020 Conference and Post-Conference Fire Workshop
The Association of Natural Resource Extension Professionals 2020 Call for Abstracts is now open. Those wishing to submit an abstract for a presentation, poster, or special session should do so by October 11, 2019. The conference will take place in Bend, Oregon May 3-6, 2020. A post-conference workshop on May 7 will include a tour of the Chiloquin Community Forest and Fire Project, a partnership between private landowners, federal and state agencies, and other partners. 

Preparing for Wildfires with Firescaping: A Master Gardener Training Webinar

This webinar is designed for Master Gardeners to Help Protect Southeastern US Communities from Wildfire. See details in the SFE Webinar section below.

Southern Fire Exchange
New Fact Sheet: Invasives and Fire
SFE has released a new fact sheet covering Terrestrial Invasive Plants and Fire. The publication includes effects on fire and post-fire response for ten common terrestrial invasive plants, as well as a decision tree for managers considering applying prescribed fire on areas impacted by invasive plants.

Upcoming Workshops
SFE has two currently scheduled workshops. Additional details and registration information will be posted on the SFE website when available. If you are interested in seeing an SFE workshop in your area, please contact SFE outreach coordinator Laurel Kays.

Fire and Organic Soils Workshop
Holly Shelter Gameland
October 21, 2019

Duff Fire Science and Management Workshop
Aiken, South Carolina
May 28, 2020

Webinar Schedule & Recent Recordings
All SFE webinars, including the recent Influences of Prescribed Fire on the Ecology of Wild Turkeys webinar held on August 1, are recorded and posted on the SFE Youtube page. SFE currently has two upcoming webinars, both of which require free registration.

Jesse Kreye, Ph.D., Penn State University
September 12, 2019 1:00 – 2:00 PM ET

Holly Campbell, University of Georgia
October 17, 2019 1:00 – 2:00 PM ET
Shortleaf Pine Initiative

New Fact Sheets: Thinning and Ecological and Social History
Two new shortleaf pine fact sheets are now available on the Shortleaf Pine Initiative website. The first covers the Ecological and Social History of Shortleaf Pine, while the second addresses Thinning Shortleaf Pine.
Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network

New Blog Posts: Fuel Treatment Effectiveness and Socio-Ecological Resilience
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:

Tall Timbers Research Station

New Edition of Tall Timbers eNews
The Summer 2019 edition of the Tall Timbers eNews includes many news stories with relevance to the Southeastern prescribed fire community, including the following:

  • New Director of Fire Research - Dr. Morgan Varner has been hired as the Director of Fire Research at Tall Timbers. Dr. Varner comes to Tall Timbers from the USDA Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station.

  • Tall Timbers Returns to Mexico - Following last year’s training in Campeche, Tall Timbers' Fire Training Specialist Greg Seamon was invited back to conduct Phase II of prescribed fire training in Guadalajara for twenty-six participants representing CONAFOR (National Forestry Commission of Mexico), CONANP (National Commission for Natural Protected Areas), UNAM (National Autonomous University of Mexico), and ProNatura (Mexico’s largest environmental organization).

Image: Brigita Leader, Seminole Nation of Oklahoma Historic Preservation Office, pauses during a prescribed fire to share the stone flakes found at Tall Timbers.
Credit: Tall Timbers Research Station
National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy

National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy Workshop Releases Program Schedule
The schedule has been released for the upcoming Cohesive Strategy workshop. Additional details about the workshop are also available on the program website.
Joint Fire Science Program

Photo Guide for Estimating Fuel Loading in the Southern Appalachians
The JFSP-supported Consortium of Appalachian Fire Managers and Scientists has released a photo guide for estimating fuel loading in the Southern Appalachians. The guide includes 74 photograph-fuel load combinations that represent unique fuel conditions in the Southern Appalachian Mountains.
Prescribed Fire News Roundup
Why Smokey Bear Desperately Needs a Makeover (And Wearing a Little Nomex Wouldn't Hurt Either)
Outside Online covers why Smokey Bear needs a makeover, and a message that includes promotion of prescribed fire.

Where Fire is a Treatment, GIS Helps Prescribe It
NC State University's Center for Geospatial Analytics News addresses the ways GIS technology is being used to plan, manage, and communicate about prescribed fire.

How Recurring Prescribed Fires fit into the NAAQS
EHS Daily Advisor summarizes recently issued guidance from the EPA's Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards on how prescribed fires fit into the National Ambient Air Quality Standards.

Number of Wildfires in LA Down in Last Decade
KPLC notes that wildfires have decreased in Louisiana in the last decade, likely due to multiple factors including the use of prescribed fire.

Croatan Still Recovering from Florence, with Human Facilities Damaged Worst
Carolina Public Press outlines how the Croatan National Forest is still recovering from Hurricane Florence, including the fact that the Forest has not conducted prescribed burns since the hurricane.

Study Reveals Unexpected Fire Role in Longleaf Pine Forests
Phys.org covers a recent study from the University of Georgia that found that fire may release excessive nitrogen that has accumulated as a result of prior land use in longleaf pine savannas.
Funding Opportunities
Close-up of $100 bills
Sustainable Forestry Initiative Conservation Grants
SFI is accepting proposals for its Conservation Grants Program through 11:59 PM ET on September 30. These projects provide the science-based data needed by resource professionals to improve forest management and to assess conservation values. Full information is available on the program website.

NFWF Emergency Coastal Resilience RFP
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation has announced the launch of the Emergency Coastal Resilience Request for Proposals. Full proposals are due by November 12, 2019. Full information is available on the program website and an applicant webinar will be held Wednesday, September 4 at 1:00 PM ET.

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
Webinars, Video, and Other Media
Recent Archived Webinars

More recorded webinars on a variety of fire 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

  • Learn, Baby, Burn - This new podcast from the Michigan Prescribed Fire Council 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.

Single Episodes

Upcoming Events, Training, and Networking
Prescribed Fire Council Meetings

  • North Florida - September 18, 2019 - Theatre Tallahassee, Tallahassee, FL. Registration is now open.

  • South Carolina - September 24-25, 2019 - Newberry, SC. Registration is now open.

  • Georgia - September 25, 2019 - Tifton Campus Conference Center, Tifton,, GA. The deadline for pre-registration is Wednesday, September 11. A draft agenda is available.

  • Central Florida - October 4, 2019, Osceola Heritage Park, Kissimmee, FL More details coming soon.

Prescribed Burner Certification Courses

  • Georgia - Courses are offered by the Georgia Forestry Commission, with the following courses scheduled for 2019:
  • October 1-2, Statesboro, GA
  • December 3-4, Jasper, GA

  • Mississippi - The Mississippi Forestry Commission offers a Prescribed Burning Short Course. One course is currently scheduled.
  • September, 2019, Starkville MS

  • Virginia - The Virginia Department of Forestry offers the materials for their prescribed fire and smoke management course online. No courses are currently scheduled.
Conferences, Workshops, Festivals and Other Events

  • March 10-11, 2020 - Forest Economic Contributions Summit, New Orleans, LA

  • 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. 
Job Postings
All jobs are open as of the Driptorch Digest send date, however application reviews may have begun.

Fire Management Specialist (Planning Fuels) - The Tennessee Division of Forestry is accepting applications through September 12 for a Fire Management Specialist.

Southeast Regional Coordinator - The Forest Stewards Guild is hiring for a full-time Southeast Regional Coordinator based out of their Asheville office. Those interested should apply by September 16.

Texas Longleaf Implementation Team Coordinator - The Texas LIT is seeking a coordinator to lead the partnership. Applications will be accepted until a suitable candidate is found.

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 
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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