Apalachicola Regional Stewardship Alliance Update: Waterproof Fire Boots

June 08, 2015 Arsa Wg Image 1 Thumb

By Brian Pelc, The Nature Conservancy

Land managers deal with many variables in order to keep their properties in good health.  Predictions of rising sea levels and warming climate must now be incorporated into long term plans for reforestation, invasive species control, and prescribed fire, but little guidance has been developed to assist with those needs.  For that reason, ARSA members focused on predictive models and their own observations to develop a comprehensive list of potential impacts from both a warmer southeastern coastal plain, and rising sea levels.  This list will be compiled into a report from the front lines that members hope will inform regional and national efforts to proactively address impacts from climate change.  Subjects ranged from unknown effects of warmer winters on newly planted longleaf seedlings to uncertain/unreliable politics’ impacts on budgets and planning.  The exercise was preceded by a presentation by researchers from the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve, which can provide accurate, local information about rising sea levels to ARSA members as needed.  ARSA members look forward to sharing the report with other Local Implementation Teams facing similar climate challenges.

In other news, ARSA continues to monitor the progress of The Apalachicola Project, a proposal to the Restore Council for restoration and management across the ARSA region.

Image 1:  Wiregrass (Aristida stricta) growing in the nursery at Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines will help bring critical fire to newly converted longleaf stands at the Conservancy’s conservation neighbor, Torreya State Park.  Photo credit: B. Pelc.

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