Officials with the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources (MDMR) plan to conduct a prescribed burn on Deer Island Coastal Preserve on March 14, 2023.
Depending on weather conditions, the burn will begin between 10 a.m. and noon and last up to six hours; however, some of the trees could smolder for much longer.
The burn will take place on a 134-acre section in the central portion of Deer Island.
This portion of the island will be closed to the public during the burn and MDMR officials are encouraging residents and tourists to stay off this part of Deer Island for at least a week because dead trees will continue to give way and fall after the burn is complete.
The prescribed fire will help thin an overpopulation of dense trees, remove heavy fuel loads from the ground and promote a healthy understory for wildlife habitat.
The fire will also aid with the removal of invasive species, such as Chinese Tallow and Cogon grass, as well as increase access to infested areas for additional treatment.