Georgia Wildfires Spark Wildlife Worries

Still no relief for wildfires burning in southeast Georgia today.
The wildfires have already charred more than 100-thousand acres of forest, swampland,
and parts of the Okefenokee Swamp.
Lightning strikes that started three new fires, winds expected to gust up to 30 miles per hour and no chance of a soaking rain are threatening to spread the wildfire.
Officials with the Georgia Emergency Management Agency are also worrying about the effect of the gigantic blaze on the wildlife in the swamp in a season that's reserved for mating and birthing for many species.
While the swamp is an environment used to fire, it's not clear what the impact might be of a prolonged burn at a time when
sandhill crane chicks are hatching, ospreys are feeding their
young, and alligators begin mating.
Another concern- the month of May is when colonies of the endangered red-cockaded woodpeckers are
nesting and Florida softshell turtles begin laying eggs, according
to the U-S Fish and Wildlife Service.
One of the fires is 80 percent contained, but the other one is
only 45 percent contained.
Officials are also worried about a third fire in Atkinson County
that has already burned nearly six thousand acres in a deep peat
bog.


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