The Indiana DNR has announced a controlled burn today at Hoosier Prairie Nature Preserve in Lake County. Motorists are advised to look for restrictions along Main Street and Kennedy Avenue. Another controlled burn was conducted at Hoosier Prairie November 19; this one is in a different part of the nature preserve. The burn is expected to take three to four hours to complete, starting at about 11am or noon today. Here's news release from the Indiana DNR:
(November 29, 2012) The Department of Natural Resources will execute a controlled burn of Hoosier Prairie Nature Preserve today, one of its routine fall procedures for Hoosier Prairie.
Smoke from the controlled burning can create a visual hazard for motorists. As a result, during the burn, local officials will close Main Street, between Wiggs Street in Griffith and Kennedy Avenue in Schererville, as done in previous years.
Traffic restrictions also will likely affect Kennedy Avenue, which may be closed or be under lane restrictions for short periods of time during the procedure.
Hoosier Prairie is a large tract maintained by the nature preserves division. It contains prairie, oak savanna and marsh habitats on both sides of Main Street in Griffith, Schererville and Highland.
The DNR conducts a controlled burn each spring and fall in order to preserve the area's rare prairie/savanna habitat, which requires sunny, open conditions. Without the fires, trees and plants common to other areas eventually would crowd out and eliminate rare prairie and savanna plants.