Fires in Oklahoma and Texas and record-low rainfall have caused many people who earn a living on the land to make decisions they have not faced in many years. Here are some items for producers to think about as they formulate drought-management plans
The other day, I thought to myself, "What if all the land area covered by Eastern red cedar was covered with thistles?" Since most thistles are listed as noxious weeds in Oklahoma and most other states as well, I believe there would be a great amount of action taken to control them. In my opinion, cedars are every bit as noxious as thistles, if not worse, and they are invading our land.
The continued spread of red cedar is a serious threat to our state's natural resources and, therefore, our economy. Prescribed fire is usually the most efficient way to prevent and remove red cedar. The Arbuckle Restoration Association is being organized so landowners and other concerned people can address such issues in Carter, Johnston and Murray counties in Oklahoma.
A well-written prescribed burning plan accomplishes several positive things.
Prescribed burning is a land management tool that should only be used when needed and after considerable planning, taking into account numerous factors including fireguards, equipment, labor, smoke management and fuel characteristics.
Eastern red cedar, which is native to Oklahoma, historically was controlled by fires. Since that isn't the case anymore, land that was once open prairie is covered with cedar and no longer provides grazing for livestock.
For natural resource managers to be successful, plant identification is a must.
Wildlife managers have plenty of activities to keep them busy during the winter - here's a list.
Prescribed fire is often recommended as a tool to open up or thin woody vegetation typical of the Cross Timbers. More open timber may increase plant diversity for wildlife and forage for cattle. This article presents the results of ten years of prescribed fire on woody vegetation.