Controlled Burns Planned for C.W. Bill Young Regional Reservoir Property
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News Release

For Immediate Release

Contact: Brandon Moore
(727) 791-2304 | (727) 470-0702

LITHIA, Fla. (Feb. 9, 2024) – Tampa Bay Water intends to conduct “controlled, prescribed burns” on six areas during the winter and spring months (February 2024 through June 2024) on the C.W. Bill Young Regional Reservoir property, also known as the Chito Branch Reserve.

The parcels slated for controlled burns are on the mitigation and conservation areas surrounding the reservoir and are depicted in the map below. Total acreage for all burn units combined is 440 acres. The burn units consist of restored uplands and wetlands, as well as former pastures dominated by grasses and shrubs.

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Planned Burn Units for Winter and Spring 2024, Reservoir Mitigation Area (aka Chito Branch Reserve)

Updates regarding specific control burns will be posted on Tampa Bay Water's social media pages.

Controlled burns are part of Tampa Bay Water’s land management program. The controlled burns at the regional reservoir are prescribed to remove nuisance plant species, encourage the growth of native species and decrease wildfire severity by reducing the amount of flammable vegetation on-site.

Prescribed burns are only conducted when weather conditions allow, and are conducted by certified, experienced personnel. Permits are obtained from the Florida Forest Service prior to initiating the burn. Efforts will be made to ensure that smoke will not affect nearby roads. However, vehicle operators should exercise caution in case smoke does lead to reduced visibility on the area’s roadways.