How wildfires are formed
wildfire are good for the forest plants and vegistion and wild land.when fire burn out of control, they can harm life and property. Many of Florida's wildfires are started because of lightning strikes. Sometimes, these lightning-created fires are contained by forestry officials and left to burn wildland areas for the good of the ecosystem. However, sometimes lightning fires can expand rapidly and burn out of the control of firefighters. Uncontrolled wildfire raging through a forest can have disastrous effects.
Impacts wildfires have on Florida
Wildfires are actually good for forests and wildlands. In fact, Florida’s plant life, or vegetation, evolved in a fire-dependent ecosystem. This means that Florida’s native plants are meant to burn by wildfires periodically. Because of this, some fires are intentionally set by forestry officials to help reduce the amount of these low-growing plants, such as palmettos, that are easily ignited and spread fire rapidly when uncontrolled.
- The 1935 Big Scrub Fire in the Ocala National Forest was the fastest spreading fire in the history of the U.S., covering 35,000 acres in 4 hours. In 1956, the Buckhead Fire burned 100,000 acres in Osceola National Forest in a single day. In the drought period of 1969 to 1976, fires in the Everglades again gained national attention, with some fires reaching 50,000 acres.
- In 1985, Florida had its first serious "wildland/urban interface" fire with the Palm Coast Fire, which burned 250 homes.
- In 1998, fires struck the same Palm Coast subdivision. 45,000 people were evacuated and fire suppression organizations responded from 44 states.
How wildfire affects living organisms
The biggest effect fire has on wildlife is the change in their habitats. Wildlife habitats, like forests, are not static; they evolve and respond to disturbances as do other natural systems. Fire changes the proportion, arrangement, and characteristic of habitats across the landscape. Immediately after a fire, there can be temporary loss of food and shelter. Animal populations may shift from species that prefer cool, moist conditions to ones that prefer warm, dry conditions.
How to perpare for a wildfire?
- If you see a wildfire and haven't received evacuation orders yet, call 9-1-1. Don't assume that someone else has already called.
- Review your homeowner's insurance policy and also prepare/update a list of your home's contents.
Know your wildfire risk.
- Make a wildfire emergency plan.
- Build or restock your emergency p including a flashlight, batteries, cash, and first aid supplies.
- Familiarize yourself with local emergency plans. Know where to go and how to get there should you need to get to higher ground, the highest level of a building or to evacuate.
- Stay tuned to your phone alerts, TV, or radio, for weather updates, emergency instructions or evacuation orders.