Controlled burns are planned this winter and spring at the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge on Maryland's Eastern Shore.
Blackwater fire crews along with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources plan to conduct the burns, which are expected to last five months beginning in January. The burns will be conducted in marshlands, woodlands, and agricultural fields on the refuge as well as the Fishing Bay Wildlife Management Area and small privately held properties within and adjacent to the two areas.
The burns are used to reduce the risk of wildlife as well as improve wildlife habitat and control invasive species. Refuge officials told The Star Democrat of Easton that priority areas are those adjacent to private homes and highways and areas near eagle nests and Delmarva fox squirrel habitat.