City of Ann Arbor Natural Area Preservation (NAP) will be conducting controlled ecological burns in local natural areas between Feb. 20 and May 24. Burns are conducted on weekdays between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m., weather permitting. On the day of a controlled burn, signs will be posted around the park and staff will be available on site to answer questions. The fire will be under control at all times.
A *public meeting and Q & A on controlled burns will be held Tuesday, Feb. 19, 7–8:30 p.m., at the Northside Community Center, 815 Taylor St. If you are unable to attend and would like to learn more, contact NAP at 734.794.6627, NAP@a2gov.org, or visit a2gov.org/NAPBurn.
Where will we burn?
During the spring 2019 season, NAP has permits to burn at the following city-owned sites: Argo Nature Area, Barton Nature Area, Berkshire Creek Nature Area, Bird Hills Nature Area, Botsford Nature Preserve, Buhr Park, Cedar Bend Nature Area, Foxfire South Park, Foxfire West Park, Fritz Park, Furstenberg Nature Area, Hollywood Park, Huron Hills Golf Course Woods, Leslie Park, Leslie Park Golf Course, Leslie Science and Nature Center, Marshall Nature Area, Maryfield Wildwood Nature Area, Narrow Gauge Way Nature Area, Oakridge Nature Area, Oakwoods Nature Area, Olson Park, South Pond Nature Area, Sugarbush Park, Sylvan Park, Tubbs Nature Area and Wurster Park.
Our native Ann Arbor ecosystems are fire-dependent. Until settlers began suppressing fires in the early 1700s, fire enriched the soil and removed dead thatch, allowing diverse native plant and animal communities to thrive. Continued fire suppression has allowed fire-intolerant, non-native plant species to out compete the native, fire-adapted plants. By reintroducing fire in our parks, we are reinstating an essential ecosystem process.
What is involved in conducting burns?
NAP staff evaluates each site and develops a burn plan that provides information on the specific ecological objectives of the burn, preferred weather conditions to minimize smoke, ignition pattern, location of burn breaks to safely contain the fire, equipment, contingency plans, and emergency phone numbers. City and township fire marshals review the plans before issuing the necessary permits. NAP then waits until weather conditions are within the range specified in the burn plan before proceeding.
How can you get more information?
Because burns are weather dependent, NAP is unable to schedule them in advance for specific days. If you would like to be called on the day of a burn near you, please call us and leave us your name, daytime phone number and street address. We also post day-of-burn information on Twitter at
*Persons with disabilities are encouraged to participate in public meetings. Accommodations, including sign language interpreters, may be arranged by contacting the city clerk’s office at 734.794.6140; via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org; or by written request addressed and mailed or delivered to: City Clerk’s Office, 301 E. Huron St., Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Requests made with less than two business days notice may not be able to be accommodated.