BLM plans prescribed fire in Sandoval County

Beginning Nov. 5, and continuing through this fall and winter, the Bureau of Land Management Rio Puerco Field Office plans to conduct two prescribed burns on BLM-managed lands in Sandoval County, weather permitting.

Elk Springs Prescribed Fire – 40 acres, located approximately 13 miles south of Cuba, N.M. The burn is expected to take one day and will be conducted on the east side of Highway 550, with smoke visible from the highway and surrounding areas. For the safety of fire crews and the public, prescribed fire signs will be posted on the highway during the operation. Motorists should travel carefully through the area when signs are present due to the potential for smoke on the highway or fire vehicles entering traffic or located on the roadside. The purpose of this project is to maintain the open grassy meadow by reducing encroaching vegetation that includes shrubs, cactus and invasive weeds.

Ball Ranch Pile Burn – 10 acres, located south of Budaghers, N.M. Smoke may be visible from I-25, San Felipe Pueblo, and surrounding areas. Fire crews will be burning piles of salt cedar and Russian olive cuttings to improve riparian area ecology and reduce fire hazards.

Prior to and during all prescribed fires, fire managers coordinate with the New Mexico Environment Department and follow all air quality regulations. People who are either susceptible to or affected by COVID-19 may have health conditions that also make them vulnerable to smoke exposure. For more information about smoke and protecting your health, please visit

Questions about these projects should be directed to the BLM Rio Puerco Field Office at 505-761-8700. You can also follow implementation of these projects on, on Twitter @nmfireinfo or on

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