FORT PIERCE, Fla. — St. Lucie County’s Environmental Resources Department (ERD) is planning two prescribed fires at Bluefield Ranch Preserve and Cypress Creek Preserve in western St. Lucie County sometime between Dec.9 and Dec. 20, depending on the weather.
The prescribed burn at Bluefield Ranch will encompass roughly 180 acres, while the Cypress Creek fire will burn about 25 acres. During the burn, Bluefield Ranch will be closed to the public and at least two days after the fire. Currently, Cypress Creek Preserve is not yet open to the public. The largest county preserve, Bluefield Ranch encompasses 3,285 acres of diverse habitat including scrub and swampland. The site features 20 miles of trails for hiking and horseback riding.
Prescribed fire mimics natural fire cycles needed in Florida to restore healthy forests and ecosystems. The process reduces undergrowth that accumulates over time and decreases the potential for wildfire. Lands where prescribed fire is administered experience an increase in native wildflowers, bird life, and other wildlife. To learn more about the benefits of prescribed fire visit www.goodfires.org.These prescribed fires will be performed in partnership with the Florida Forestry Service.
Owned and managed by St. Lucie County, these preserves were purchased through a voter-approved bond referendum 25 years ago. St. Lucie County’s Environmental Resources Department manages more than 10,000 acres that are open to the public for passive recreation.
For more information about the county’s preserves or for the most up-to-date information about the closure, please contact the ERD staff at 772-462-2525 or visit www.stluciepreserves.com.
–St. Lucie County