BLM Ferris Mountain Prescribed Burn Phase 1
Contact(s):Tags: riparian, habitat conservation project, prescribed burn, wildlife, sagebrush, Habitat
BLM-Rawlins Field Office
Project Synopsis: the Ferris Mountain project area consists of mainly timbered slopes, interspersed with upland areas dominated by sagebrush, grass, and mountain shrub communities. Timber stands within the project unit consist of Douglas fir, subalpine fir, spruce, lodgepole pine, limber pine, and aspen, in addition to scattered locations of Rocky Mountain juniper. Long-term suppression of wildfires has promoted the encroachment of conifers into shrublands, aspen stands, and drainages supporting aspen, waterbirch and willows, to the point where many of these communities are non-functional. Decadence and disease is commonly observed in terms of mistletoe, blister rust, and bleeding rust, and pine beetles have killed many of the older trees, particularly the pines. Aspen health was a focus of recent watershed assessments, since it now occupies less than 10% of the habitat compared to the early 1900’s. This project will allow for future reintroduction of bighorn sheep to the area, help achieve population objectives for mule deer, improve streamflows and trout fisheries on and away from the mountain, and improve habitat diversity benefiting all wildlife species. Although there would be benefits in forage production and availability in addition to water, this is not a primary reason for this project.