Mississippi Prescribed Burning Program accepting applications in new counties

Published 8:12 am Sunday, September 3, 2023

The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks is continuing its partnership with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Wildlife Mississippi, The Nature Conservancy and others to provide cost-share for prescribed burning on private lands.

Since its inception in 2011, the “Fire on the Forty” program has provided cost-share funding for prescribed burning on more than 84,000 acres.
Prescribed fire is a very important tool for forest and wildlife management.

As part of the “Fire on the Forty” initiative, the partnership will reimburse burning projects in selected focal counties up to 75 percent of the costs for implementing and performing a prescribed burn. As a result of increased funding from federal grants, focal counties have been expanded to include 65 of Mississippi’s 82 counties.

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The program is funded by a variety of grants, some of which are focused on specific geographies to target fire-dependent species like the gopher tortoise, or fire-maintained habitats like Black Belt Prairies. For more information or to view a map of focal areas for the “Fire on the Forty” Initiative, visit www.mdwfp.com/fireontheforty.

Landowners must submit an application for entry into the program prior to October 20 to be considered for funding for the 2024 burn season. All applications will be competitively ranked based on potential benefits for target wildlife species.

Funding for the “Fire on the Forty” initiative is provided by the Department of the Interior, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, the National Wild Turkey Federation and the newly authorized Outdoor Stewardship Trust Fund.

For more information regarding wildlife management on private lands, visit www.mdwfp.com/privatelands, email john.gruchy@wfp.ms.gov, or call 601-432-2199.