KLAMATH, Calif. (KIEM)- History was made this month after three local tribes performed controlled burns on just under one hundred acres on the Yurok Reservation, according to their Fire Capt. David Rubalcaba, the first time, ever.
Yurok Tribe officials invited both the Karuk and Hoopa tribes to join them to “bring fire back onto the land” for cultural benefits, and to remove built up fuels, which will help reduce the potential of wildfires on the Yurok Reservation.
Fire crews used the TREX Model or Prescribed Fire Training Exchanges, which promotes a more holistic approach on forest management.
Tribal officials say western science has barely caught up to what Native Americans have known and been doing all their lives.
“You know Native American culture, since time began, we were stewards of the land and part of that stewardship is using fire to promote healthy plant species and wildlife,” said Hoopa’s Fire Chief Gregory Moon. “And how we do that is by putting fire on the ground. And in a culturally sensitive and smart way to where we can be a part of the eco-system, if you will.”
Moon says more prescribed burns are planned, only if weather and moisture conditions are ideal.