We don’t play with fire… we put it to work!

A low-intensity, prescribed fire creeps through a wooded area, consuming dry brush and grasses while leaving upper tree branches and crowns untouched.

Smokey Bear teaches us not to play around when it comes to wildfires; instead, the Forest Service and other land management agencies are now putting fire to work to help keep western forests healthy, productive, and even make them safer for surrounding communities.

Find out what makes fire in the West unique, including the importance and benefits of healthy fire to forest ecosystems, in this Untamed Science video, produced with assistance from the USDA Forest Service Pacific Southwest Research Station and Western Forestry Leadership Coalition.

For more information, check out How the West Was Burned: A Tale of Wildfires and Ecosystems in the American West on the Untamed Science website: http://www.untamedscience.com/biology/ecology/ecology-articles/western-wildfires/

Above: Fire creeps through a wooded area during a prescribed burn conducted as part of the Greater La Pine Basin Cohesive Strategy Project in an undated USDA Forest Service photo. The project is a collaborative effort between the Deschutes National Forest and local communities to address the threat of wildland fire across jurisdictional boundaries, increase forest resiliency on a landscape level, restore dry, fire-adapted forest habitat, and ensure high-quality water in the upper Deschutes River basin.

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