Many states in the South provide online vendor databases for prescribed burning either on the state forestry agency website, or through the Prescribed Fire Council. On these sites, prescribed burn contractors can add their business to a list where private landowners can then search the database to find a contractor who offers prescribed burning in their area.
Some of the databases were developed as tools to assist landowners in finding forest management related service providers for implementation of a variety of forestry practices, including prescribed burning. In other cases, the databases are specific to just prescribed burning. Also, in some states each vendor has successfully completed a state-sponsored burn planning/implementing training course, passed a reference check, provided proof of insurance, and/or a resume of prescribed fire experience, whereas in other states any vendor can add themselves to a list without having to provide proof of relevant experience.
It is important for landowners seeking a burn contractor from one of the sites below understand that most lists are provided solely as a courtesy to landowners, and that in most cases, the sites where the vendors are provided do not make any representation as to the quality of work or business practices of the firms listed.
When trying to decide if a particular service provider is for you, you should consider a few important points:
- Compare a couple of service providers, if possible. Depending on the number of vendors in your area, this may be difficult.
- If you live in a state that provides Burn Manager Certification, request a copy of their Certification.
- Request a list of 3-4 references, and then call them to get a feel for the quality of work they provide.
- Request a copy of their insurance policy, and make sure their policy is current and covers the activities that they will be doing for you.
- Request a copy of a completed burn plan to ensure that is includes the basic information such as objectives, contingencies, maps, etc. You can typically find more information on what to expect in a burn plan on your state forestry agency website.
- You may want to have an attorney review any contracts or agreements before you sign such documents.
The following sites provide online vendor databases for prescribed burning in the Southern U.S.:
Alabama: In Alabama, this site narrows down the list of service providers available to you by first allowing you to select the county in which you want to have the work done, then by selecting from a variety of services, including fireline installation, prescribed burning, and residential Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) work.
Arkansas: The Arkansas Prescribed Fire Network provides this site with information on contract burners.
Georgia: The Georgia Forestry Commission provides this site to find consulting foresters. Here, you can narrow your search by name, credentials (Including Certified Prescribed Burner), service area, and service provided (including prescribed burning).
Florida: The Florida Forest Service provides this web-based vendor listing as a tool to assist landowners in finding forest management related service providers for implementation of forestry practices on their land. To find a burner, choose “Vendor by Subcategory” then choose the county in which you want the work to be completed, and be sure to check the box for “Rx Burning.”
Kentucky: None found.
Louisiana: Although a list is available, it is not found online at this time.
Mississippi: None found.
North Carolina: This North Carolina Forest Service website provides information for landowners seeking contractors who offer services including prescribed burning. Options for prescribed burning contractors varies by region.
Oklahoma: None found.
South Carolina: Although a list is available, it is not found online at this time.
Tennessee: None found.
Texas: The Texas Department of Agriculture provides this site which lists all Certified and Insured Prescribed Burn Managers that are licensed by the Department.
In addition, this new application connects landowners and land management service providers by helping landowners find land management service providers, and assisting service providers in aggregating land management services. If you are a landowner, click “Find Service Provider,” then “Service Provider List,” and choose your region and the type of service that you need (including prescribed burning and wildfire protection).
Virginia: The Virginia Prescribed Fire Council hosts this site for landowners to find contractors who provide prescribed burning services.
Do you know of a website not shown here? Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.