A harmonious balanced relationship exists between all naturally occurring organisms in a healthy environmental community. The term ecosystem describes an amazing sense of balance between all living things as species depend upon one another's existence for their own survival and well being. Harmony within an environment promotes the natural succession of plants and animals who grow and strengthen in their genetic diversity as time goes on. The more varied the populations, the more likely they are to resist and survive environmental pressures such as drought, disease and the intrusion of human activity. The major conservation goal for ThunderCroft is finding and preserving harmony in our meadows and our forests.
Meadow Restoration Ecology Program
Drawing from the destructive strength of natural wildfires, Native Americans as well as Colonists began harnessing this force of nature to intentionally maintain the most optimal and productive lands for human inhabitation. Fire's thirst for fuel has been shaping ecosystems since the creation of the Earth itself, clearing out dead lumber and selecting only the strongest native species of plants to survive and flourish.
Controlled burning of meadows and the understory of woodlands are becoming a major management tool for establishing a healthy environment for both native plants and animals. Burning recycles valuable nutrients back into the soil and encourages the growth of native plants to recover lost territory from years of mismanagement by humans.
All of ThunderCroft's meadows and some of the forested land is on a 3 year burn program for each of the various parcels within the wildlife management plan. Controlled burns will assure that the habitat here at ThunderCroft remains at a high state of productivity for native plants and the wildlife that they support.
Members of the New River Valley Wildland Fire Crew igniting the initial perimeter blaze
Crew members cautiously watching as the initial surge sweeps across the open meadow
ThunderCroft's Controlled Burn Program--Re-establishing Native Ecosystems Through Fire