By Brooke Curley
SAFFORD – Locals are always wary of smoke rising in the distance, but this time there is no need to worry since it is simply a prescribed burn that cast the visible smoke Tuesday.
According to the U.S. Forest Service, the burn in the Galiuro Mountain Range has been in progress for a number of weeks. A shift in the wind Tuesday caused the smoke from the fire to be visible from the Safford area. According to the news release, the fire is part of the Coronado’s Galiuro FireScape Project. The prescribed burn is scheduled for multiple wilderness ranges.
Benefits of a Prescribed Burn
Reduces hazardous fuels, protecting human communities from extreme fires
Minimizes the spread of pest insects and disease
Removes unwanted species which threaten species native to an ecosystem
Provides forage for game
Improves habitat for threatened and endangered species
Recycles nutrients back to the soil
Promotes the growth of trees, wildflowers and other plants