Damages from wildland fires can be devastating to your forests and wildlife. A single wildfire during the wrong set of conditions can wipe out years of investment in your trees. Here are four ways you can become proactive in wildfire protection:

  • Install firebreaks
    Construct and maintain firebreaks around the perimeter of your forest to help keep fire from entering your property. Interior firebreaks help contain wildfire in isolated areas and aid in suppression efforts. Firebreaks also allow for easier access to inspect your property while providing trails for recreation.

  • Mitigate along the edge
    Reduce hazardous accumulations of “flashy” fuels along roadways and property entrances where arson fires are most readily ignited. Flashy fuels are grasses that easily dry out and scrubby vegetation. Removing these types of fuels not only disrupts what firefighters call the fuel ladder (keeping the fire on the ground), it also adds to the aesthetics of your property.

  • Limit access
    Install gates or similar barriers to limit unwanted access to your property. Post your telephone number should someone need to contact you. Limiting access also helps minimize trespassing and protects your land from arson, dumping, poaching, timber theft, and vandalism.

  • Partner with others
    Become part of your community’s wildfire protection efforts. Get involved with your local volunteer fire department and the Missouri Department of Conservation’s efforts to plan for wildfire protection.