Attention NJ Forest Fire Service

dragoncjo

Piney
Aug 12, 2005
1,370
99
1,028
39
camden county
Well said Guy!

In regards to homes in Barnegat being burnt that is a risk of living in the barrens. Its the same as earthquakes in California/Japan, hurricanes in Florida, floods along rivers.

Again your posts contradict each other. You say that the people have learned through first hand knowledge and criticize book knowledge but then go on later to explain that they learned in a classroom. Many folks on here learned through first hand knowledge and also in a classroom, its a nice blend and extremely knowledgable.

You show a complete lack of knowledge and lack of observation if you think these roads will grow over. What roads cut in the pine barrens have grown over? Will a species along that wetland corridor be impacted because of a new road being inserted there? I think there might, did the forestry service consider that?

If you came in a expressed your thoughts professionally like you did in your final two paragraphs the reaction may have been different. But my guess is your in your early 20's and haven't learned that yet.
 

bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
11,915
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Pines; Bamber area
Wow. You actually think I post just to be contrary to you?

How did it go with Pitchell and have you expressed your concerns to Station 59 in Bamber?
Yes, you do post to annoy me. I'm on to you. :D

I sent this post to the DEP. Station 59 in Bamber? I doubt they did this. They don't own a dozer that I know of, and this is state land.
 

bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
11,915
2,295
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Pines; Bamber area
Every year, certain blocks of woodlands are chosen by their respective section wardens for possible burning. Their plans must then go to the respective Division office for approval. Many meetings are held to discuss which blocks should, or shouldn't, be done that particular year. Plans are studied, and gone over numerous times with the personnel selected to perform that task.
Is that where my tax dollars are going? Guys huddled in rooms poring over maps, making decisions where to bulldoze new roads and trails? And then, up to the big Mahoff in Trenton for final approval?

You don't get it, do you? None of that stuff they do works in a wildfire. When the '95 fire came through Greenwood Forest, the trucks couldn't even keep up with the fire. They were going in reverse at 55 mph, and I don't blame them. You show me a man that will go on that road by Cedar Creek they just built in order to try and stop an April fire with the winds blowing 45 mph, and I'll show you a fool.
 

local vollie

Scout
Apr 6, 2011
44
2
8
Must have hit a nerve !

WOW, I never realized that my opinion would cause such a fuss. But let me set some of your "facts" straight. Having been born and raised in the Pine Barrens, and considered a true "Piney", I believe that I have quite an insight into the eco system of the pine barrens from ACTUAL FIRST HAND knowledge, and NOT from something I read in a book by some self proclaimed author, or second hand information I heard from this one or that. Much of what I learned was from many years listening to those who went before me, hunting, fishing, and most important of all......Fighting many wildland fires, and doing thousands of acres of prescribed burning.

Reading some of the replies to my earlier post made me chuckle to say the least. It must be so easy to be an armchair quarterback and whine and complain about the pines. Guess what, they have been there for thousands of years, and will be there long after we are all gone. Contrary to anyone's opinion, these newly plowed roads will regrow without any further attention given them, however, they were put in to be used as a safety barrier however small they are. DISAGREE ????? go onto the NJ FIREWISE site and read the protective distances recommended for safety zones around your homes in the wilderness.....1 1/2-2 times the height of the tallest trees near your home. Certainly ALOT wider than the roads and plow lines used to control wild land fires or prescribed burns.

You snicker when these roads are cleared, but are the first to whine and complain should something happen to your precious home. A PRIME example of this was in the trailer park in Brighton of Barnegat. where one home was lost, and a second very badly damaged. For over 15 years, the citizens there were told that there should be at least a 100 foot safety zone around the perimeter of the park. Needless to say, these homes were ONLY 11 FEET from the woodline. I personally saw many of the Forest Fire trucks, and the volunteers do EVERYTHING possible to save those 2 dwellings to the point where several of the trucks came out with melted paint, drooping plastic, and very worn out Firefighters. And guess what? The first thing to come out of some of the peoples mouths.......The Forest Fire Service did nothing to help.......that, my friends, is pure horse hockey !!!!!!

Every year, certain blocks of woodlands are chosen by their respective section wardens for possible burning. Their plans must then go to the respective Division office for approval. Many meetings are held to discuss which blocks should, or shouldn't, be done that particular year. Plans are studied, and gone over numerous times with the personnel selected to perform that task. People who have spent countless hours in the field, and in classrooms learning how to BEST preserve our Forests.

With that said, I reviewed the pictures that were posted at the beginning of this post. Normally most pieces are "flagged" with surveying tape, but as someone posted earlier, the paint used might have been better had it been "washable". While that is a good suggestion, many times there is considerable time lapses between when flagging or marking is done, and the actual plowing of firelines or roads. This does not happen haphazardly. Careful consideration is given to each situation, and what best serves the area which is to be burned. If a road is deemed necessary, then that was obviously the best answer for that area. No more nor less. So PLEASE stop trying to make it into something that it clearly is not.

And whoever posted about their oak trees dying......check into the Japanese boring beetles. They have killed hundreds of oaks around where I live.
 

local vollie

Scout
Apr 6, 2011
44
2
8
Poor baby !!!!

I have kept out of this for various reasons, but your post annoys the hell out of me. In fact you do also. You think you know everything but your post tells us you are living in the stone age and Quarter Mile is case in point. You think those roads will grow over, but vehicles can now go down them and that is exactly what will happen. There needs to be a law in this state that the individuals from the FFS who plow a road through the woods when a fire is not happening, must put up a gate and monitor it for as long as that road is viewable from the main road. You are the reason that a group of concerned citizens had to fight to get Quarter Mile closed, and it is obvious from your mindset that individuals will continue to have to solve the problems that you are creating by doing what you have done.

You are no piney to me, you are someone who thinks that they are, wishes they are, but in reality you are a curmudgeon who needs to leave things alone and let other make the proper decisions. Please don't come here and tell us we know nothing ... you look quite foolish.

Guy
I am glad I annoy you.....it's really tough to have a battle of wits with an unarmed person !!!! And Sir, you are CLEARLY NOT a piney. My guess that you are one of the most annoying people to lacal residants....a TRANSPLANT. I have done NOTHING wrong,, but individuals like yourself who "THINK" they are some self appointed sentiles of our forest lands are an absolute waste of time. Have you EVER in in your insignificant life volunteered to put YOUR life in danger??? Ever been in front of a 100' wall of flames to protect life and property??? Ever got up from the middle of a family event and been gone for days to protect our wild lands that you seem to care about??? I DOUBT IT, because you sir are a BIG MOUTH who feels justified by trying to bring GREAT people down to your level. I do not look foolish, you do. I've been there and done that as they say, and am humbled by the individuals that I have been honored to work with over the years, and VERY proud to call many of them my friends.

SO pleae, keep your feeble minded opinions to yourself !!!! And in the words of my beloved father...."Tis better to be thought an idiot, than to open your mouth and remove ALL doubt". I have NO doubts about you !!!!!!!
 

bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
11,915
2,295
1,093
Pines; Bamber area
Tonite, I did receive a reply from a high level fire warden. While I can't say it is all I would like to hear, he was courteous, and I made my point. I appreciate him replying. Hopefully they'll take it to heart, and start making their mark much less prominent in the future.

...."Thank you for your letter of concern. I assure you that we are as concerned as you. Upon investigation, I found that the person responsible for painting the trees, a part-time employee, had done the work during December while our full-time Section Firewarden was not on duty. When the Section Firewarden returned to the work area in February, he witnessed the painting and told the responsible person that this quality of work is not acceptable.

I also understand the reactions to the dozer plowlines and have read the comments in the attached forum. Please be advised that these projects receive review by the various experts within the DEP to minimize the harm to the environment. While it is difficult to see the immediate result of the project, it must be remembered that the justification is based upon current science to reduce the high levels of forest fuels - therefore protecting life and property - and to perpetuate this fire adopted ecosystem safely.

We are very concerned with any negative environmental impacts and we strive to make every effort, where possible, to reduce the visual impacts necessary. Our primary concern must be public safety, but this does not mean that we do not try to balance these actions with good environmental stewardship.

Thank you for contacting us. Please feel free to contact me if you have any further questions or concerns in the future....."
 

local vollie

Scout
Apr 6, 2011
44
2
8
Misguided

Well said Guy!

In regards to homes in Barnegat being burnt that is a risk of living in the barrens. Its the same as earthquakes in California/Japan, hurricanes in Florida, floods along rivers.

Again your posts contradict each other. You say that the people have learned through first hand knowledge and criticize book knowledge but then go on later to explain that they learned in a classroom. Many folks on here learned through first hand knowledge and also in a classroom, its a nice blend and extremely knowledgable.

You show a complete lack of knowledge and lack of observation if you think these roads will grow over. What roads cut in the pine barrens have grown over? Will a species along that wetland corridor be impacted because of a new road being inserted there? I think there might, did the forestry service consider that?

If you came in a expressed your thoughts professionally like you did in your final two paragraphs the reaction may have been different. But my guess is your in your early 20's and haven't learned that yet.
And YOU would be wrong. I'm probably older than yourself. I could personally show you MANY roads that have grown over in the pines. FYI...get a copy of the U.S geological survey maps, and you will find MANY, MANY roads that no longer exist BECAUSE THEY HAVE GROWN OVER !!!! But you'll continue to post because that is what you do. Ill informed and believe that what you've heard or read, or think you know, is gospel. You have no idea the pre-planning and meetings that go on behind the scenes with most every ecological agancy in this state BEFORE ANY line is plowed, or any road is made. HAS to be approved, or it doesn't happen. But you and the other posters would have known this had you actually researched this matter first.
 

bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
11,915
2,295
1,093
Pines; Bamber area
You have no idea the pre-planning and meetings that go on behind the scenes with most every ecological agancy in this state BEFORE ANY line is plowed, or any road is made. HAS to be approved, or it doesn't happen. But you and the other posters would have known this had you actually researched this matter first.
Oh hell, I know that Vollie. All I'm saying is the approval was wrong-headed and stupid.
 

local vollie

Scout
Apr 6, 2011
44
2
8
Curious

Oh hell, I know that Vollie. All I'm saying is the approval was wrong-headed and stupid.
I am not trying to be confrontational. I just do not understand your point of view. Why is this wrong-headed and/or stupid??? These firebreaks are very instrumental during prescribed burning, and the roads make for quick access for early intervention during a wildland fire.

I truly understand that no one wants easy access for firestarters, or to destroy pristine forest. UNFORTUNATELY, it is a necessary evil in good fire prevention that these plowlines and roads are cxreated. I read with great interest the reply from a "high level firewarden" that the FFS does their best to remain good stewards for NJ forests. I can personally attest to that. NO ONE wants to see wildland destroyed or ruined. Thats why this service exists. Controlled burning helps eliminate overgrowth and the chances for a wildland fire to become a conflagration (i.e. 1963 when NJ lost over 160,000 acres). This was NOT acceptable, and prescribed burning came to the forefront. I certainly don't want to drive through the woods I've grown up in and see a bunch of burnt twigs.

If everyone really wanted to focus on something worthwhile on this site, work to preserve the pinelands from the ever increasing homes being built one by one in the pines. Or, the losing the watershed in the pines. It is a beautiful place, and we all need to work to together to make sure it is there for generations to come.
 

whippoorbill

Explorer
Jul 29, 2003
673
113
43
62
Bridgeton
Not everybody realizes that there are sensitivities at work here relating to other issues recently discussed on the forum. Guy’s recent post concerning ¼ mile spells this out.

Just the other day, I saw what must have been a large prescribed burn on Sandy Ridge Road. The burn result minimally extended from just north of Hawken Bridge for a few miles all the way to where the southernmost of the old cranberry bogs of Friendship meet Sandy Ridge.

Adjacent to these bogs at Friendship was once a path essentially impassable to motor vehicles (Ed’s photographs on the first page of this thread might be of this path/now road); it has now been bulldozed to a width which would enable a vehicle of any size to enter and use. With this cleared path now accessible via Sandy Ridge Road (a major thoroughfare), I have little doubt this will happen. My prediction is that this now severely damaged way will not in time restore to its original state -- unless something is done to prevent vehicular access.

One might surmise that this burn was prescribed to protect the sensitive, and beautiful, bog environment. Does anybody here know? But some of this beauty might have been permanently lost, and the area could very well experience further, repeated harm. Let’s do what we have to do to protect from fire, but let’s have a plan for afterwards to fix the damage done, and prevent more.

Very close to this new bulldozed road is possibly the best habitat for Pine Barrens tree frogs in Wharton State Forest. I sit out there at night and record them. What I saw, so close-by, saddened me.
 

woodjin

Piney
Nov 8, 2004
4,274
244
1,043
Near Mt. Misery
I am not trying to be confrontational. I just do not understand your point of view. Why is this wrong-headed and/or stupid??? These firebreaks are very instrumental during prescribed burning, and the roads make for quick access for early intervention during a wildland fire.

I truly understand that no one wants easy access for firestarters, or to destroy pristine forest. UNFORTUNATELY, it is a necessary evil in good fire prevention that these plowlines and roads are cxreated. I read with great interest the reply from a "high level firewarden" that the FFS does their best to remain good stewards for NJ forests. I can personally attest to that. NO ONE wants to see wildland destroyed or ruined. Thats why this service exists. Controlled burning helps eliminate overgrowth and the chances for a wildland fire to become a conflagration (i.e. 1963 when NJ lost over 160,000 acres). This was NOT acceptable, and prescribed burning came to the forefront. I certainly don't want to drive through the woods I've grown up in and see a bunch of burnt twigs.

If everyone really wanted to focus on something worthwhile on this site, work to preserve the pinelands from the ever increasing homes being built one by one in the pines. Or, the losing the watershed in the pines. It is a beautiful place, and we all need to work to together to make sure it is there for generations to come.
LV,
Clearly you saw this thread, it hit a nerve, and you came in with guns blazing. Maybe not thinking it through entirely in order to be effective in getting your point across. This is, of course, a publically accessable forum and anybody (within reason) can get on here. However, the core of this site includes: a professor of geology who wrote his doctural thesis on the pinebarrens, a historian who authored books about the pinebarrens, a number of people who have volunteered their time to study and monitor the herpes of the pine barrens, hunters who have been hunting the pines for decades, an expert in the division of land ownership, current and historical within the barrens. Those that manage publically owned land. Volunteers in every capacity that have benefited the pines, both in maintenance and politics. The list goes on and on.

The person who started this thread has held office in a very effective not-for-profit land stewardship organization. He has also organized and participated in a massive annual clean up. he is an expert in pine barrens flora and, since the 60's has honestly crawled through thousands of acres in the deepest darkest corridors of the pines that not even the jersey devil would dare to try his luck.

I think the concern is over the fundamental impact that fire prevention has had on the pine barrens ecology, and the effectiveness of some of the current practices by the FFS. I don't believe that anyone is attacking the motives or the character of the fire fighters. I think you are cooling down based off your last post. A civil disscussion about the effectiveness of prescribed burns and firebreaks, and their environmental impact could still happen here.

Jeff
 

bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
11,915
2,295
1,093
Pines; Bamber area
I am not trying to be confrontational. I just do not understand your point of view. Why is this wrong-headed and/or stupid???
I am not against prescribed burning to protect homes. But vollie, think about it--in this case, a single small firebreak aound the perimiter was all that was needed. It was burned, when, early March? All they had to do was station a few guys on that firebreak in the back to ensure it did not go further---after all, isn't that what a firebreak is for?

The bulldozed road and north/south firebreaks are overkill in such a small area. If that is going to be the practice, we will fragment the pines into ugly little squares bordered by roads. Who wants that?
 

46er

BANNED
Mar 24, 2004
8,838
2,121
1,093
Coastal NJ
Some very good information at this link. Surprising how easy it was to find. :D

Opinions are just that, opinions. And as Dalton once said, "Opinions vary".

A key phrase from the link below; "All plans for Division of Parks and Forestry lands are reviewed by a team of natural resource specialists; this technical forest management team provides information regarding other natural resource interests. After their review has been completed, the proposals are made available for public comment."

http://www.state.nj.us/dep/parksandforests/fire/whm-burning.htm

Another horse has been beat to death, the herd is suffering. I'm gone.
 

Boyd

Super Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Jul 31, 2004
7,574
1,501
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Ben's Branch, Stephen Creek
Do your oaks have what appear to be ping pong balls on the branches? if so it is oak gall wasps, no preventative. I've lost a couple as well. More firewood.
Yes, that's it exactly. Have been meaning to research this. I agree completely... Those oaks provide my supply of firewood and, really, I am partial to pines anyway so I'm happy to watch my land progress into an pine-oak forest.

As for the squirrels, I realize they eat the seeds, but they don't always finish the job so that's why I wondered if they might help.
 

manumuskin

Piney
Jul 20, 2003
7,801
1,747
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millville nj
www.youtube.com
Very true. Most of my own property has progressed to an Oak-Pine forest, but in recent years some kind of insects have been killing the oak trees. The pines are staging a nice comeback all by themselves, with small trees growing larger each year. There have been no controlled burns.

Also, the squirrels love to nibble on the pine cones and I see the litter scattered all over the place every fall. I've often wondered if that also helps the seeds propagate?
no doubt red squirrels.They leave piles of cones (middens) generally on logs,stumps or any place of vantage where they can get a view though they will eat them on the ground too.Grey squirrels like oaks and acorns better.I once had a red squirrel sell me a tremendous amount of crap from a dead limb 7 ft off the ground attached to a pine tree.I walked right up to him close enough i could have reached up and slapped crap outta him and he still continued to abuse me in the worst fashion.I thought better of slapping crap out of him when i remembered how a grey my dad had shot and thought he killed when i was a kid stepped on it with his hunting boot to make sure it was dead whereupon it did a sit up and sunk it's insciors through his boot and into his toe.Reds are a little smaller but i still thought better of it.
Al
 

manumuskin

Piney
Jul 20, 2003
7,801
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millville nj
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Al I've learned alot from you as well with R&A and other things along with all the other unknowledgable people on this site...lol.

Al was just down in your neck of the woods doing some hiking, the woods are quiet down there today, seemed like it was the middle of the winter....didn't hear too many amphibs calling.
I have a lec of maybe five peepers across the street from my house.I have no idea where the water is they call from but their there every year.It's yards and houses and small woodlots all over here so they may be in a stump or a bird bath?They will call right down to 40 degrees.Such is the lure of love but you are right cold temps are killing the chorus's down here.can't waith till some 60 degree nights.
Al