LandSmart Grazing - Phase I and Phase II
Gold Ridge and Sonoma RCDs are partners in the LandSmart Grazing Program. This project supports interested neighbors or community groups to utilize grazing to reduce fuel load and make their communities safer in the face of wildfires. The goal is that exposure to this type of vegetation management and community support of grazing will add a cost effective and needed tool to manage vegetation not only to reduce fire risks but also to improve biodiversity and manage vegetation in a more carbon beneficial manner. The benefits to community cohesion, coordination and morale are anticipated to grow as the project process unfolds and more projects are implemented.
Locations for grazing support are throughout Sonoma County.
- Estero Americano (180500050302)
- Upper Sonoma Creek (180500020301)
- Schell Creek-Frontal San Pablo Bay Estuaries (180500020502)
- Salmon Creek (180101090201)
- Russian Gulch-Frontal Pacific Ocean (180101090202)
- Upper Santa Rosa Creek (180101100702)
- Porter Creek-Mark West Creek (180101100706)
- East Austin Creek (180101100801)
- Ward Creek-Austin Creek (180101100802)
- Green Valley Creek (180101100901)
- Porter Creek-Russian River (180101100902)
- Dutch Bill Creek-Russian River (180101100903)
|State Assembly Voting District|
|State Senate Voting District|
|Other Partners||Contract Grazers, Wild Oat Hollow|
Expected Performance Measures
|Forest Fuels Reduction||CAL FIRE UNIT: Sonoma-Lake Napa Project Objective: Defensible Space Property Ownership: Private Treatment Type: Biomass Removal||213.18 acres|
|People Participating in Activity||Constituent Type: Landowners Primary Service Type: Fire Safe/Firewise||25|
|People Participating in Activity||Constituent Type: Agricultural Community Primary Service Type: Fire Safe/Firewise||19|
Reported Performance Measures
|Forest Fuels Reduction|
|CAL FIRE UNIT||Project Objective||Property Ownership||Treatment Type||Total||2023||2022||Units|
|Sonoma-Lake Napa||Defensible Space||Private||Brush Removal||205.18||106.02||99.16||acres|
|People Participating in Activity|
|Constituent Type||Primary Service Type||Total||2023||2022||Units|
|Agricultural Community||Fire Safe/Firewise||9||5||4||number|
|No accomplishments to report for:|
|Explanation:||During 2021 an application was created for the public to apply and projects were selected, but no projects began implementation until 2022.|
|Comment:||Phase I of LandSmart Grazing (2021-2022) had a budget of $224,600 between the SCAPOSD grant and landowner cost share ($20,000). For LandSmart Grazing Phase II (2022-2023), the project has been continued with a new grant as well as continued landowner cost share ($30,000), and match funds from AmeriCorps fellows ($30,000) for a budget of $415,513. For LandSmart Grazing Phase III (2023-2024), the project is continued with a new grant and continued landowner cost share.|
|Landowner Cost Share (Private)||$10,000.00||$5,000.00||$16,251.53||$31,251.53|
|Note:||Expenditures reflect implementation of Phase I and updates for Phase II, which will need to be updated as projects finish. Phase III will be added once implementation starts.|
Grazing will add a cost effective and needed tool to manage vegetation to reduce fire risks. Grazing will improve biodiversity and manage vegetation in a more carbon beneficial manner. The program implements projects to increase resilience to climate change impacts using nature-based solutions and other multi-benefit strategies. This project also continues to serve previously burned properties for invasive weed removal and fuel load reduction in preparation for future post-fire recovery activities.
The devastating wildfires of the October 2017 forever changed communities in Sonoma County, and it highlighted the necessity for fire prevention and preparedness. And then again in 2019, many communities within the County were evacuated during the Kinkade Fire. Strong offshore winds made the likelihood of fire spread from eastern Sonoma County to western Sonoma County high. We need to support communities or individuals either start their own grazing or work in community to share the responsibilities of grazing for vegetation management.
Our ecosystems have adapted to fire over tens of thousands of years, yet for over a century we have aimed to keep fires out of our landscapes & suppress them when they occur. While this has worked much of the time, it has contributed to an accumulation of available fuel, on the landscape. As a result, the small subset of fires that inevitably cannot be immediately suppressed become dramatic & catastrophic conflagrations burning with behavior and effects outside the natural range of variation. Prescribed herbivory will only remove one- and ten-hour fuels.
Prescribed herbivory will only remove one- and ten-hour fuels. But animals can be used for vegetation management and are beneficial for: air quality (when compared to the use of prescribed fire), noise, proximity to structures, steep slopes, and areas with noxious weeds. Grazing reduces flame length and fire intensity, and can therefore shift grasses from a highly flammable and effective fire spreader into a natural fire barrier. Maintaining flame lengths below four feet in grasslands also allows firefighters to manage fires without the use of heavy equipment.
No Notes entered.