November 27, 2012 - Fires in the Falkland Islands

Fires in the Falkland Islands

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite passed over the Falkland Islands on November 17, 2012 and captured this true-color image of fires burning in the north-central section of East Falkland Island.

Farmers in the Falkland Islands often burn pastureland in the early spring to encourage fresh growth of grasses, which are richer in nutrients than tired, senescent vegetation. When ewes give birth to spring lambs, they will move the animals to recently-burned areas to graze.

Fires are also used to clear land for planting, both in fall and the springtime, in many areas. However, the fires in this image are located in an area primarily known for sheep production. It is reasonable to speculate that they are not only agricultural in origin, but also the result of the local practice of pasture renewal.

Image Facts
Satellite: Aqua
Date Acquired: 11/17/2012
Resolutions: 1km ( B), 500m ( B), 250m ( B)
Bands Used: 1,4,3
Image Credit: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC