Monday, September 28, 2015

Fighting the Mud River Complex of Wildfires in Big Cypress National Preserve FL

I have a special affection for the Everglades National Park and the Big Cypress National Preserve in South Florida. My interest in the Everglades stems from my time in graduate school when I did a lot of reading on South Florida, in particular the Everglades National Park and the Big Cypress National Preserve. I recall from my reading that fires have played an important role in the ecology of this region. My studies on South Flordia took place twenty-five years ago. My life took a different turn and I did not pursue my interest in doing more studies on the Everglades and the Big Cypress. That is life. However, my affection for that region of Flordia remains.

About thirteen years ago I spent Christmas week in central Florida. We took a couple of days and took a trip down to South Florida, staying outside of Naples. The day that we drove across Route 41 remains with me to this day. Unfortunately, the pictures that I took do not remain with me. I wish that I had some photos to share with you from that trip, if I can dig them up, I'll revise this post.

Driving across Route 41 was special, we took a side trip and drove through a portion of the Big Cypress Preserve. A special place.

I knew that there were a complex of wildfires, the Mud River Complex, that burned in the Big Cypress National Preserve this past May. The Mud River Complex of fires burned 30,000 acres in the Big Cypress National Preserve. The total acreage of the Big Cypress is 729,000 acres.  Bill Gabbert of Wildfire Today covered these fires on May 14th (maps), May 23rd, and May 25th (interviews with firefighters working the Mud River Complex. I checked Inciweb to find that they are no longer listing any information for the Mud River Complex.

When I saw that Bill Gabbert had shared a documentary film on the Mud River Complex in a September 24th post on Wildfire Today, I knew that I had to honor my affection for that part of Florida and share it with you. Perhaps those of you who follow Wildfire Today have already seen the video. If so, I think that it is worth watching again. The video is a little over ten minutes long. You will see some footage of helicopters working the wildfire as well as some aerial footage of some of the areas burned by the fire. I was especially struck by the work that went into saving areas were wildlife feed and raise their young. Here is the direct link to video that I am embedding below. Please go to the link and read more about this video by clicking more.

No comments: