Puget Sound Ecological Fire Program 2015 Summary Report

2015 was another exceptional year operationally, in spite of the complications posed by record drought and wildfires in the region. Early dry weather allowed us to begin burning in April and continue with few interruptions into October. With access to more than 70 partner firefighters and equipment, we were able to implement safe burning practices throughout the drought during safe weather conditions on Joint Base Lewis McChord (JBLM). Current permitting practices and the stresses of the wildfire season on local preparedness limited our ability to burn off of JBLM until mid-September. In total, we completed 1934 acres during 87 burns on 11 different ownerships in south Puget Sound. Based on the number of operational burn shifts (though not total acres), we continue to be the most active prescribed fire program in the state. Primary land managing burn partners include Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington Departments of Fish and Wildlife and Natural Resources, Wolf Haven, Center for Natural Lands Management and Thurston County as well as Pacific Rim Institute and Whidbey Camano Land Trust in North Puget Sound.