ELKO, Nev. – The Bureau of Land Management, Elko District Office, is completing Emergency Stabilization and Rehabilitation (ESR) work on 2013 fire areas within the district, and on Feb. 12 is offering the public an opportunity to view aerial seeding of lands near Lee, Nev. impacted by the Smith Ranch Fire.The Smith Ranch Fire started July 19, 2013 and was contained on July 25 after burning 2,759 acres.
The Elko District Office completed five ESR plans for Fiscal Year 2013 fires: Wieland, Smith Ranch, North Valley, Red Cow, and Waterpipe. Seeding treatments include both rangeland drills and aerial application, and focus on the rehabilitation of Greater Sage-grouse and other critical wildlife habitat, such as Lahontan cutthroat trout, mule deer and pronghorn. Drill seeding was completed on the North Valley and Smith Ranch fires in November. Aerial seeding of the five fires started on January 16.
In cooperation with the U.S. Forest Service, Nevada Department of Wildlife and private land owners, aerial seeding treatments are being done on a watershed basis. Seed and application costs for private land are provided by NDOW, and BLM is providing seed and application costs for public portions of the fire. A little over 7,200 acres of aerial seeding is planned on public lands, and about 4,700 acres of private land are being seeded. This is in addition to the 164 acres already drill seeded.
Treatments include the ground and aerial application of grass, forb and shrub seeds, as well as fence repair, erosion control structures and noxious weed treatments. There will also be temporary protective fence construction to ensure recovery of native vegetation, thereby protecting public land users’ investment in range rehabilitation.
In addition, aggressive noxious weed detection surveys and treatments will be conducted across the burned areas to prevent any potential weed infestations occurring as a result of the fires. BLM weed crews will work treating weeds through an integrated approach using both chemical and mechanical methods.
Interested public should contact Lesli Ellis-Wouters at (775) 753-0386, or meet at the BLM Elko District Office at 3900 E. Idaho St., at 8 a.m. on Feb. 12. Interested public must provide their own transportation and should be prepared to drive off-road. Inclement weather could postpone aerial seeding.
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