Beale AFB, Calif. June 2, 2020 – Approximately 6 acres of prescribed burning is scheduled for June 5th 2020 on Beale Air Force Base at the corner of A St and Gavin Mandery.

The intention of this prescribed burn is to study the fire effects on milkweed, monarchs and associated upland vegetation on Beale AFB. The study is designed to try to answer the following questions:

  1. How does season of prescribed burning affect an extant milkweed population and associated upland vegetation?
  2. How does the season of burning affect monarch use of milkweed?
  3. How does fuel load impact fire temperature at ground level and does fire temperature differ significantly by burn season?
  4. Does fire temperature at ground level impact milkweed survival?

Prescribed burn operations will begin when plots come within prescriptive levels that meet the objectives of the prescribed fire plan and research project. The Air Force will only initiate the burns with favorable weather conditions including humidity, temperature, wind speed and direction, and moisture in the vegetation. Fire crews conduct small test fires before igniting the larger area to verify how effectively vegetation (fuels) will be consumed to ensure the burn and smoke management objectives can be met. Beale’s Air Quality Manager and Wildland Fire & Fuels Specialist work diligently with Air Quality Management Districts to minimize smoke impacts to the communities.

During active firing operations, fire personnel and vehicles working in these vicinities will be visible to the public. Motorists are reminded to slow down and drive with heightened caution when passing through active project areas.