Jarhead fire burns 25,000 acres in Big Cypress National Preserve

Jarhead fire in Big Cypress National Preserve
Jarhead fire in Big Cypress National Preserve. Photo: Whitaker

The Jarhead fire has burned over 25,000 acres in the Big Cypress National Preserve in Florida since it started from a lighting strike on April 26.

Jarhead fire in Big Cypress National Preserve.
Transportation used on the Jarhead fire in Big Cypress National Preserve. Photo: Bastion

Here is an excerpt from today’s National Park Service Morning Report:

Yesterday Preserve personnel verified that two privately owned hunting camps and a known Florida panther den, with four cubs, were lost due to wildfire activity. Additionally, on April 28, another private camp was lost. Owners of the private camps have been notified. In the case of the panther den, it is known that the adult female associated with the den has survived.

Several small outbuildings on private properties and several NPS properties have also been lost. In all instances reasonable fire suppression activities were being applied until such time that fire and smoke conditions dictated the removal of firefighters for safety reasons.

Today’s Activity – Crews are continuing to secure the northeastern perimeter of the fire. Aerial ignition operations will continue on the southeastern flank west of Oasis Trail, and structure protection will be underway in the area north of Oasis Visitor Center. Crews will monitor the burnout along Monument Road on the southwest side of the fire, while protecting structures in the area. Aerial ignition burnouts will be initiated from Monument Road east to tie in with the southwestern and western flanks of the fire. The northwest side of the fire will be assessed to determine feasibility of another burnout operation. Aerial ignitions are used to lower fire intensities and increase firefighter safety.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.