Earlier today, I posted a blog which briefly discussed the projects that I will be conducting over the next two years. Two projects are looking at the effects of prescribed fire on herpetofauna. Yes, there may be direct effects as reptiles and amphibians may be caught up in the fire and may become injured or killed. But, many reptiles and amphibians will survive the fire and have to deal with the changes in habitat. But seriously, to what extent can a prescribed fire change the landscape? What exactly does a prescribed fire/controlled burn look like in action? My fantastic team of technicians will be assisting me this summer as we collect pre-burn data. Most of them will never see an actual prescribed fire. These are just some of the questions that may go through my technicians’ minds as they work for me this summer; some questions that may be going through your mind as well! So today we took a field trip away from our field sites to see a prescribed burn in action. After an 0800 briefing we set out to observe the burn in action. Everything went as smoothly as we could have hoped for, and the burn snuck its way through the forest consuming leaf litter, high-bush blueberry, low birch and maple saplings, and coarse woody debris. Flame heights mainly stayed pretty low, and nothing got out of control. Next summer my study sites will be burned as well, and we will be able to investigate the effects on timber rattlesnakes and vernal pool amphibians. Can. Not. Wait.