Prescribed burn underway this afternoon on Dare County mainland

The burn was ignited along Mashoes Road around midday. [photo courtesy USFWS]

U.S. Fish and Wildlife is conducting a prescribed burn today of 600 to 800 acres of marshland on the Dare County mainland near Manns Harbor.

The burn is taking place in Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge along Mashoes Road, which is located on a peninsula between the East Lake and Croatan Sound.

Prescribed burns within the refuges serve multiple purposes, depending on the time of year. Generally occurring in the spring and fall, the burns can enhance safety in case of a future wildfire, control vegetation, and create more desirable habitats for migratory birds.

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