Helping Animals and Plants
From The Bugwood Network
Improve Wildlife Habitat
Prescribed burning is highly recommended for wildlife habitat management where loblolly, shortleaf, longleaf, or slash pine is the primary overstory species. Periodic fire tends to favor understory species that require a more open habitat.
Prescribed fire can improve wildlife habitat.
Manage Competing Vegetation
Low-value, poor-quality, shade-tolerant hardwoods often occupy or encroach upon land best suited to growing pine. Unwanted species may crowd out or suppress pine seedlings. However, with the judicious use of prescribed fire, the understory can be managed to limit competition with desired species while at the same time providing browse for wildlife.
Summer burn for hardwood control.
Hardwood topkill after summer burn.
Control Insects and Disease
Brownspot disease is a fungal infection that may seriously weaken and eventually kill longleaf pine seedlings. Any type of burning that kills the diseased needles without killing the terminal bud is satisfactory.
Longleaf pine infected with brownspot needle blight.
... and after prescribed fire.