Dr. Butch Taylor loves the Sonora Experiment Station dearly, and another person who loves it just as much is Dr. Doug Tolleson. It seems only appropriate that we follow Dr. Taylor’s words of wisdom with Dr. Tolleson’s.
How did you get introduced to fire? Early in life, we would burn pastures periodically to “clean them up” and at scout camp we would help dig line to contain small forest fires.
Professionally, I would help Keith Owens and his crew at the Uvalde Experiment Station and then Jim Ansley at the Vernon Experiment Station with their prescribed fire research.
How early do you start planning for a prescribed burn? As early as possible, but let’s say about a year ahead on average if you count grazing deferment, etc…
What’s most unique about a post-fire environment? When it rains we look like geniuses… seriously, I think it is the way rangelands respond to fire given the pre-fire conditions and post-fire precipitation, etc…
In your opinion, what makes a successful fire? Proper planning beforehand and a good rain after (see question 3)
Who or what would you never burn without? An experienced burn boss and an up to date weather report