On April 7, 2008, a dusting of snow lingered over the mountainous terrain west of the city of Chita in southern Russia, but spring fires were burning in abundance in the lower elevations. Places where the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite detected fires are marked in red. A relatively strong wind is carrying smoke plumes from the fires to the southeast. The smoke is slightly grayer than surrounding clouds. It is early in the spring season for naturally ignited wildfires to be occurring in the region’s forests, which suggests that these fires are either intentional fires for agriculture or forest management, or accidental forest fires.
You can download a 250-meter-resolution KMZ file of the fires suitable for use with Google Earth.
NASA image created by Jesse Allen, using data provided courtesy of the MODIS Rapid Response team. Caption by Rebecca Lindsey.