A wildfire that started May 7 is spreading rapidly in Big Cypress National Preserve 37 miles west of Miami, Florida. The fire is south of Tamiami Trail near the shared boundary with Everglades National Park.
The Moonfish Fire is actively burning in sawgrass prairie and cypress strands. Full suppression actions are taking place given the current drought and wind conditions. Wildfire Today’s very unofficial estimate of the size is approximately 6,000 acres.
An MD-87 air tanker, Tanker 101, delivered a total of four loads of retardant on Thursday and Friday, flying out of the Lake City Tanker Base, a 650-mile round trip. On April 21 that aircraft lost an engine after dropping retardant on the Holcombe Road Fire in Crockett County Texas. The crew declared an emergency and landed safely on one engine after diverting to Midland, Texas (MAF) as airport crash-rescue trucks stood by.
Personnel from Big Cypress National Preserve and Everglades National Park are working the Moonfish Fire along with interagency assistance from Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service, and Miami-Dade Fire to protect structures in the area. Two helicopters and three engines were assigned to the fire on Thursday.
South Florida is currently experiencing hot, dry conditions typical of this time of year.