Exploring the Transformation of Burning Star

The historic site of Burning Star, nestled in the heart of Jackson Co, echoes of a coal mining past. The site, once home to the bustling operations of the Truax-Traer Coal Company since 1927, has undergone a remarkable transformation since the closure. Today, Burning Star stands as a testament to the power of restoration and renewal.

Originally known as a coal mining site, the Truax-Traer Coal Company ceased production in 1989, closing their doors in 1992 with land reclamation starting soon after.

Despite the scars of human disturbance from mining, logging, and agriculture, Burning Star is now a haven for biodiversity and natural beauty. The site boasts a diverse array of flora, from woody plants to herbaceous species, reclaiming the land and breathing new life into the once-impacted areas. With large tracts of forestland interspersed with cropland, lakes, wetlands, shrubland, and grasslands, Burning Star showcases the resilience of nature in the face of adversity.

The site contains six types of land, Cropland consisting of 36 individual fields from 3-140 acres each, Forests with a total of approximately 1,524 acres, Scrub / shrubland totaling approximately 795 acres, Grassland with a total of approximately 284 acres, Wetland with a total of approximately 164 acres and Lakes and Open Water, consisting of 24 lakes and ponds, totaling approximately 551.5 acres in water.

With over 4,500 huntable acres, the site offers ample opportunities for hunting upland game, forest game, waterfowl, and furbearers. Active habitat management ensures the sustainability of wildlife populations and enhances the hunting experience throughout the year.

However, visitors should be aware of site-specific regulations, including the requirement for a windshield card displayed on the vehicle dashboard for reporting hunting effort and harvest by February 15th. Additionally, from November 1st to March 1st, the site is a Restricted Hunting Area, permitting only vehicles with a valid Hunter Windshield Card and license. Fishing is prohibited from November 1st through the last day of February.

As the final stages of reclamation near completion, Burning Star is poised to become a beacon of conservation and sustainability in our community. With plans for public access and recreational amenities, including trails, day-use areas, and wildlife viewing platforms, the site will continue to evolve as a beloved destination for generations to come.

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