On April 5-6, 2017, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), in conjunction with Holloman Air Force Base, is planning a prescribed burn within Otero County in southern New Mexico. Personnel will concentrate their efforts on burning the Centennial Bombing Range located on McGregor Range. Centennial is approximately 20 miles northeast of Oro Grande, New Mexico, in Otero County. An anticipated 500 acres of grassland will be targeted for hand ignition. Smoke from the fire may be visible from Highway 54.
Weather permitting, the prescribed burning will be conducted throughout the week. Depending on weather conditions, smoke may be visible during and possibly days after the burn is conducted.
In total, 15-20 BLM firefighters and personnel will monitor the fire. The prescribed burn is being conducted to reduce the risk of wildfire spreading to public lands from the bombing range.
Prescribed burning is one of the most effective tools to control vegetation in areas where wildfires are no longer appropriate. By reducing the volume of vegetation under the specific prescribed conditions, land managers mimic the natural fire cycle, which greatly reduces the dangers and risks associated with unplanned wildfires.
For additional information about the prescribed burn, please contact BLM Las Cruces District Fuels Specialist Ricky Cox at 575-525-4467 or BLM Las Cruces District Fire Management Officer Mark Bernal at 575-525-4305.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM’s mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.