The Delaware Forest Service will host its “23rd Annual Fire Camp” event at Blackbird State Forest (502 Blackbird Forest Road, Smyrna DE 19977) on Saturday, March 30 from 6:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The intensive one-day seminar is the capstone of the agency’s wildfire training program to certify its emergency firefighters to meet National Wildfire Coordinating Group standards. State forest visitors should be advised that trail closures and other restrictions will be in effect for the event.
Volunteers are needed to plant 2,000 hardwood seedlings at Blackbird State Forest on Saturday and Sunday, April 13 and 14, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. Two seniors from Middletown High School, Bryan Alberding and Nick Kupsick, are leading the project in cooperation with the Delaware Forest Service and the DNREC Nonpoint Source Program (NPS), which is funding the trees. The project will take place on Blackbird State Forest’s Naudain Tract, 2076 Harvey Straughn Road, Townsend, Delaware 19734. The rain date is April 27 and 28, 2019.
The Delaware Forest Service is sending a crew of 20 wildland firefighters to the Northern Rockies to help battle wildfires in the West as the National Fire Preparedness Level is now at the maximum of 5 on a 5-point scale. The team is flying from Harrisburg to Missoula, Montana (MSO) on Sunday, August 5. Delaware also sent a crew to the Rocky Mountains on July 3.
For the first time, the Delaware Forest Service (DFS) will issue turkey hunting permits through a separate lottery for the 2019 spring season. Previously, statewide permits were available only through DNREC’s Division of Fish and Wildlife. The 2019 Delaware turkey hunting season runs for four consecutive weeks from Saturday, April 13 to Saturday, May 11, with a special youth and non-ambulatory disabled hunter day scheduled for Saturday, April 6. State forest turkey permits will be issued for one of four season segments: A (4/13-4/19), B (4/20-4/26), C (4/27-5/3), or D (5/4-5/11).
The Delaware Forest Service is sending a 20-person wildfire crew to Colorado’s Rocky Mountain region as more uncontained large fires in the West has increased the demand for trained firefighters. The National Fire Preparedness Level was increased to 3 on a 5-point scale on June 29, indicating that wildfire activity is occurring in multiple geographic areas and mobilization of resources through national agencies is moderate to heavy.
The crew mobilized on Tuesday, July 3 at Blackbird State Forest in Smyrna, Delaware and will travel to Denver from Philadelphia on July 4 for positioning in the Rocky Mountain Geographic Area, which has reported 5 new fires and currently has 6 uncontained large fires. Nationally, 66 fires are currently burning a total of 578,424 acres. As of July 3, a total of 277 wildfire crews are currently deployed across all regions of the U.S. and wildfire activity is expected to increase.