Wild Fires

By: Fabiola Haro and Zach Sims

What Are Wildfires?

Wild fires are large destructive fires that spread quickly over woodland and brush, usually in the high plains. These raging fires are usually created by lightning strikes, volcanic eruptions, arson, unattended campfires, still lit cigarettes, burning debris, and sometimes unfortunate squirrles that wander onto power lines.

Wildfires cause destructive effects to the environment. For instance, when the trees and plants that hold down the soil are burned away signifacant erosion occurs. Another negative effect is the process of glassification which is where silica is heated up so much it turns to an impermeable layer in the soil. Another bad effect is that wildfires cause large amounts of smoke to be released into the air making it harder to breath for humans and animals. Yet, not all effects are bad ones.

One effect in particular is good; when plants are burned they turn to ash making the soil more fertile for the plants in the future.They also can consume vegetation that could have over grown and kept over plants from recieving water. Another positive, is that wildfires can open up space for new buildings. Also, some plants only seed when they are burned.

Real World Fire

The Bastrop County Fire

The destructive fire of Bastrop County is one of the biggest wildfires in Texas history. This terrible fire was caused in 2011 when trees fell on powers lines causing them to spark. This fire burned down 550 homes, closed state parks, devoured 34,000 acres, killed two people, and caused 5,000 people to evacuate.

See how fast wildfire spreads - Texas Parks and Wildlife [Official]