On Thursday, March 29, Program Director Thomas Coleman oversaw a prescribed burn at Gravatt to benefit the surrounding ecosystems. It is Gravatt’s Mission to be a sanctuary of environmental stewardship, and this prescribed burn is just one way that we fulfill this mission. We use fire to maintain and improve the aesthetics of Gravatt, while also serving to control hardwood, non-native plant species. They also assist in improving habitat for wildlife by maintaining plant communities that wildlife requires by promoting seed germination for native plant species. Numerous wildlife species benefit from prescribed fire through its removal of thick undergrowth, making travel and feeding much easier for species such as turkey, quail, songbirds, and reptiles, also promoting growth of valuable food plants such as legumes.
Did you know that fire is also useful tool in reducing fuel levels assisting in protection from wildfires? Wildfires in areas where prescribed burns have been used cause less damage and are easier to control than areas that are not regularly burned, by removing fuel (like leaves, pine needles, and twigs), and the chances of a damaging wildfire are greatly reduced.
Our prescribed burns at Gravatt provide great opportunities for continual environmental stewardship, while showcasing our natural resources through educating our guests and campers on the benefits of prescribed fire and other management techniques utilized at Gravatt. Your class can learn about all of this and more at your next field trip to Gravatt!