San Pasqual Fire burning 720 acres in Bosque Del Apache, 75% contained

Pasqual Fire

SAN ANTONIO, N.M. (KRQE) – A new fire was reported Monday burning in the Bosque Del Apache Wildlife refuge.

The fire is said to be lightning caused and is estimated to be burning approximately 720 acres, U.S. Fish and Wildlife officials said Tuesday.

Chris Leeser with the Bosque Del Apache National Wildlife Refuge said Thursday afternoon that the fire is now 75 percent contained.

Personnel working on the fire has decreased from 120 people to 75 people, according to Leeser. Crews are from various agencies including, U.S. Fish and Wildlife, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service and Socorro County Fire. In additional to other crews, officials say San Antonio Volunteer Firefighters and Midway Volunteer firefighters are assisting. They were among the first to arrive.

New Mexico State Forestry officials say no structures are threatened.

Sky News 13 flew over the fire Monday night and observed flames burning in wild Bosque areas on both sides of the Rio Grande south of the main visitor center and viewing areas at the refuge but not immediately threatening those.

Flames were occasionally exceeding 100 feet tall according to Sky News 13’s Pilot Reporter Bob Martin.

Fire officials said Tuesday they are currently working on maintaining fire lines to keep the blaze contained. They say much of what is burning right now is salt cedar, which is very explosive. It’s also a non-native plant that is unwanted in the area.

The preserve has spent years trying to eradicate the tree that sucks up an enormous amount of water and forces out native plants, so officials say this fire may actually be a good thing.

Fire officials say the north and south tour loops have been reopened.

 

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