Prescribed fires planned at 5 Saskatoon parks

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Saskatoon parks staff in consultation with the Meewasin Valley Authority and the Saskatoon Fire Department will be performing brief, small-scale prescribed fires this fall in the naturalized areas within Heritage, Lakewood, Hyde, Donna Birkmaier and Gabriel Dumont Parks.

The fires are part of the city’s strategy to enhance and conserve the biodiversity of naturalized areas in Saskatoon parks, according to a news release.

Prescribed fires are a common, cost-effective park management practice and replicate the natural renewal process of grasslands, reduce the risk of wildfire and enhance habitat for wildlife, according to the city.

The Saskatoon Fire Department is either on-site or on call to help manage the fire if needed, the city says.

The city says the following can be expected during and after a prescribed fire:

  • Small areas of land are burned during a fire, so only portions of a park are blackened at any given time
  • Shrubs and trees are not burned and therefore are not negatively impacted
  • Vigorous new growth occurs following a fire which is appreciated by wildlife
  • The reduction in accumulated dead plant material provides protection against accidental wildfires
  • Smoke is present for the duration of the fire but dissipates once the fire is over