This past week a fire has been going in Big Cypress. They have several fires, but the most is north of I-75 / Alligator Alley between hwy 29 and the Miccosukee Plaze. That stretches about 30 miles. Known as the Midland and Strickland fire, it covers about 55,000 acres. It is about 50 percent contained and has been going on for at least a week. The hot dry weather with strong winds have helped to keep it going.
Then we have had a fire going for the past week off Miller road, that has put a lot of smoke on the park. We had a little bit of rain yesterday, but it did not rain in the places that needed, and not for very long.
An arson fire in Fakahatchee south of Jerome has been extinguished. Law enforcement is looking for a suspect in a dark green Ford Expedition or Toyota Tundra. Hopefully they catch this felon. The work on fire supression really runined some great cypress and marsh area. Once an arson fire starts, every local and state agency has to work to supress it, and the results are kinda ugly. If it was a prescribed burn, most of the work goes in preparation so these areas do not need to be bulldozed.
Here is a photo from our Fakahatchee fire in the NW corner a couple weeks ago. This is the plane doing a water drop.
it is very dry up here as well...water levels are down all over georgia and tennessee. the rivers here are much lower than they should be, and in georgia on the way up they were way lower if not dry altogether. anyone who says that there is nothing unusual going on in the world has some serious reality issues! i think we are looking at a major climate shift, such as was dealt with in previous centuries. perhaps something as major as that which ended the age of megafauna and flora. we are looking at the end of an age, and all anyone can do is argur over it. even if this is nothing more than a lot of piled up consequences coming to roost, things are still not going to be pretty for some time to come...
The news today says Lake O is reaching record lows for water levels. The Everglades Restoration plan was to have the water flow down from the lake to the southwest, but there is no water to flow.
One thing about the fire this past month in Fakahatchee: There was a similar burn in the same area in 2001. Since then the Prairie Canal has been filled in for seven miles. We used one area of the filled in canal for our staging area during the fire. It is now a series of small ponds, and the fishing is very good in them. But anyway, the water level measured at the wells was two feet higher than in 2001. So filling in the canal has brought up the water table in the ground two feet, and has shown an immediate effect of filling in the canals. The fire also burned a lot less intense than in 2001.
The news this morning also said that wildfires have closed S.R. 78 on the western side of Lake O between C.R. 721 and Buckhead Ridge.