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Impacts of Arizona's wildfires on wildlife and outdoor recreation (updated)

Posted in: News Media
Jun 14, 2011
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Updated June 14, 2011 - Arizona is currently experiencing one of its worst wildfire seasons on record. As of June 14, 2011, the Wallow Fire in eastern Arizona, which began on May 29, has burned nearly 470,000 acres, making it the largest wildfire in the state‚Äôs history. The fire is 18 percent contained as of this writing.

Two other major wildfires are also burning in the state: the Horseshoe Two Fire, which began May 8 and has consumed more than 170,000 acres in the southeast part of the state (53 percent contained as of June 14), and the Murphy Fire, which began May 30 and has burned more than 68,000 acres in the southern part of the state (90 percent contained as of June 12). The state is extremely dry and is at high risk of other wildfires until summer monsoon rains arrive.

Our thoughts and sympathies go out to the communities that have been so significantly impacted by these fires, and our heartfelt thanks go to the firefighters and support personnel who are diligently working to bring these fires under control. Game and Fish currently has more than 30 wildlife officers working with the incident management teams or with local law enforcement on various security or evacuation measures.

Hunters, anglers, wildlife watchers and other outdoor recreationists will undoubtedly have questions about what impact the fires will have on wildlife, hunting, fishing and outdoor recreational opportunities in those areas. We have developed a new web page with information that may answer some of your questions.

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