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JACKSONVILLE, NC (AP) — Officials plan controlled burns at Camp Lejeune to reduce the possibility of forest fires.

The Camp Lejeune Environmental Management Division has started lighting fires on forestry parts of the base and will continue the process for the next eight months.

Officials say the burning will help maintain clear habitats for endangered species and reduce the possibility of an uncontrolled wildfire. Kyle Avesing with the environmental management division says the prescribed burns will help endangered species like the Venus fly trap, rough-leaf loosestrife plant and the red-cockaded woodpecker.

Avesing says residents on and around the Marine training base can expect to see smoke from the planned fires until August. There will be a break in April and May because of the seasonal risk of fires.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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