Author: Sharisse Thompson |

TOLEDO (WTOL) - Metroparks Toledo ignited several acres of land Wednesday as part of a controlled burn effort.

“The Department of Natural Resources in charge of this controlled burn at Wildwood Preserve. It’s actually a management tool to prevent larger, more destructive fires,” Tim Schetter with Metroparks Toledo said.

Crews wearing fire-resistant clothing torched several acres of land; a necessity to prevent catastrophic wildfires and to protect the ecosystem. “Many of the plants and animals in the region are adapted to fire so without fire we can’t have healthy plants, the wildlife rely on for habitat," Schetter said.

But instead of an emergency, this was all planned.

“We’ll then go to the north end. We’ll light a head fire and the head fire is a much more higher intensity fire that’s going to carry much across the area we’re burning,” Schetter said.

The smoke and flames got the attention of park-goers. “You see it on TV but it’s not something that you can see in real life very often,” Schetter said.

The fires were also intended to make sure crews are equipped to handle larger, more dangerous fires.

“But in a typical year we burn eight to ten times or more if we can,” Schetter said.