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E.F. Logo     Enchanted Forest Nature Sanctuary
444 Columbia Blvd., Titusville Florida 32780

Scrub Burn -- August 13, 1999

The Scrub is a "Fire Dependent" ecosystem. For example: without fire the bushes grow and shade the ground. This prevents food that the Gopher Tortoise depends on from growing. Without Gopher Tortoises and their burrows, animals have no really cool place to hide from the sun and fire. Scrub brush would grow into trees. Commensal (burrow dependent) species would lose their home. We would lose an environment, and its flora and fauna, that have been around since the last Ice Age, and before.
The photos in this set were taken from the same general area, in the same general direction.
      1. -- From the Canal Trail, near the Blue Trail, looking south.
      2. -- From the Lime Trail, at the Blue Trail, looking east & southeast.
      3. -- From the Yellow Trail, at the White Trail, looking north.
First, you see the area as we have known it - an overgrown scrub, unburned for decades. Second, the area has been prepared for the burn by cutting trees and shrubs from the edges to prevent an intense fire from jumping across the fire lines. Third is the area as it looked the day after the burn.
      Click on a picture to see an enlargement. Use the BACK button on your Browser to return here.
1. Blue and Canal Trails looking south. Blue and Canal Trails looking south. Blue and Canal Trails looking south.
2. Lime Trail before preparing for the burn. Lime Trail before preparing for the burn. Lime Trail before preparing for the burn.
3. Yellow and White Trails looking north. Yellow and White Trails looking north. Yellow and White Trails looking north
Yellow & White Trails looking north 8/14/99
August 14, 1999
Yellow & White Trails looking north 1/15/00
January 15, 2000
Yellow & White Trails looking north 5/14/01
May 14, 2001
QuickTime logoGet QuickTime 4WOW! Click here for a 360 degree view of the burn
from near location 1 above.

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hold down the mouse button, them move it slightly. Watch.
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Provided by Raymond Mojica of the EELs Program.

Flames in the Scrub and the crew that controlled them.

Crew for the controlled burn - 8/13/99
Crew for the
controlled burn - 8/13/99.
Starting a backfire for the controlled Burn
Starting a backfire to
help control Burn.
Fire truck at the controlled burn.
Fire truck at
the controlled burn.
Flames in the Scrub #1 - controlled burn 8/13/99 Flames in the Scrub #2 - controlled burn 8/13/99 Flames in the Scrub #3 - controlled burn 8/13/99
These photos were taken near the intersection of the Yellow and White Trails (site #3 above).
This is the SouthEast corner of the 10 acre burn.

Life in the Scrub after the burn.

Lime and Blue Trails looking northeast. Looking northeast from the Lime and Blue Trails after the burn. (#2 - above) Active Gopher Tortoise burrow after the burn. Just 18 hours after the burn, a "threatened species list" Gopher Tortoise has cleaned out her/his burrow and taken a look around.
Ants clean out their hole. Surviving fire and a fire vehicle wheels, ants clean out their hole, showing the color of the soil under the surface. Lizzard exploring new surroundings. One of our "endangered species list" Scrub Lizzards explores his/her new surroundings.
A flareup the next day. 27 hours after the fire a brisk breeze fans an ember into flame. Is was quickly extinguished. Armadillo foraging 2 weeks after the burn. An armadillo found foraging for food two weeks after the burn.

Parks and Recreation — Environmentally Endangered Lands Program
Public Information Release

Mike Knight, Program Manager, EEL Program
Office Phone: 321-255-4466 •
June 6, 2008

Prescribed Burns Prevent Wildfires in South Brevard

Brevard County Nature Sanctuaries managed under the Brevard County Environmentally Endangered Lands Program that had recently been treated with prescribed fire, acted as a barrier to the recent wildfires in South Brevard.

The Jordan Scrub Sanctuary (275 acres) in Malabar and the Micco Scrub Sanctuary (175 acres) along Micco Road, were treated with several prescribed fires between November 2007 and February 2008. Although the vegetation had grown back, the accumulation of consumable fuels was very limited and as a result, prevented the recent wildfires from penetrating the sites, and gaining additional strength as the wildfires moved closer to homes. The attached photos show the conservation tracks unburned, but surrounded by completely burned private property.

Prescribed fire is a tool to apply a natural process to the health of our ecosystems, while helping to prevent devastating wildfires. The preservation of natural habitat, and the use of prescribed fire as biological management tool, can significantly reduce the threat and intensity of wildfires.

An additional wildfire mitigation project was underway at the Malabar Scrub Sanctuary during the outbreak of the wildfires. The work, completed by the Division of Forestry involved expanding the existing fire lines and mechanically reducing wildfire-prone vegetation to allow for the safe application of future prescribed fires. The project provided both a biological benefit to the health of the nature sanctuary and wildfire protection to the adjacent homes.

The Brevard County Environmentally Endangered Lands Program was established in 1990 and 2004 through two voter-approved referenda for the purpose of preserving the unique biological diversity of Brevard County's natural resources.

For more information please call the Environmentally Endangered Lands Program at (321) 255-4466. Or through the website at

New York Times - June 30, 2002 - Article on prescribed fire after the huge fires in Colorado, Arizona and elsewhere.

Idea of Fighting Fire With Fire Wins Converts

"But this week, the biggest wildfire in Colorado history, the Hayman fire, dropped dead in its tracks when it met the boundary of the fire set deliberately by the Forest Service last year.

"That would scare anyone to death when the government says, `I'm here to burn down the forest, trust me,' " said Bob Foster, who owns the Lost Valley Guest Ranch near here, surrounded by Pike National Forest. "I have a little different take on it now," Mr. Foster said, crediting the controlled burn of last year with helping to save his ranch.

"Convincing people in the West that the only way to save the forest around them is to let the government burn it is perhaps the biggest challenge facing the Forest Service as it tries to reverse a century-old policy of fighting every fire."


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