WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Fire Helps Natural Land In Maryland Stay Renewed

Play associated audio

Usually, when 70 acres of anything is on fire, alarms are sounded and cavalries are called, but back down a long dirt road called Bear Swamp, deep inside the Nassawango Creek Preserve — the state's largest privately owned natural area, made up of more than 10,000 acres of upland forest and bald cypress swamp — dozens of ecologists dressed in hardhats and yellow jumpsuits are as calm as can be, as they are actually the ones setting the blaze.

"Historically, wildfires used to sweep through this area periodically, and what's happened now is folks have moved in, we've created roads, subdivisions, Walmart's ," says Deborah Landau, a conservation ecologist for the Maryland-D.C. chapter of the nature conservancy.

Landau says that restorative or prescribed fires like this one basically reboot the land and kick-start new life.

"The heat pulse that comes through the ground that stimulates a lot of the native plants to germinate has really speeded up the ecological restoration of these natural areas," she says.

So even though one might equate fire with destruction, Landau says in this case, it's all about renewal.

NPR

Bill Cosby Removed From Documentary On Black Stuntmen

Bill Cosby was instrumental in opening the door for black stuntmen in Hollywood early in his career. He was to be a central figure in a new documentary about black stuntmen, but that has now changed. He will be mentioned, but his interviews have been pulled, following the latest revelations about the comedian, who admitted in court documents that he drugged women for sex.
NPR

Me-Tea-Morphosis: Tea Bags Get Second Life As Works Of Art

Artists are reinventing the humble tea bag, letting its contents and simple shape and color shine in beautiful, fragile art. Some are even farming out the tea drinking to get to the used bags.
NPR

President Obama Addresses African Union In Ethiopia

President Obama addressed the African Union in Ethiopia on Tuesday, becoming the first sitting U.S. president to do so. He encouraged African leaders to step down when their term is up and not aim to be president for life. The current AU chairman is Robert Mugabe, who has has been president of Zimbabwe since the country won independence in 1980.
NPR

Researchers Warn Against 'Autonomous Weapons' Arms Race

Already, researcher Stuart Russell says, sentry robots in South Korea "can spot and track a human being for a distance of two miles – and can very accurately kill that person."

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.