Central Africa is often shrouded in equatorial clouds, especially during the rainy season. Fjallraven Kanken No.2 When our Dove satellites pass over the area on a clear day it’s an event here at Planet Labs. One such event happened last week. On March 3, a Dove beamed a clear view of the Democratic Republic of Congo into our platform.

…and the imagery didn’t disappoint.

Burning grasslands near Kikwit, Democratic Republic of Congo. Image captured on March 3, 2016. Image ©2016 Planet Labs, Inc. cc-by-sa 4.0.

Burning grasslands near Kikwit, Democratic Republic of Congo. Image captured on March 3, 2016. fjallraven kanken rugzakken Image ©2016 Planet Labs, Inc. Phoenix Suns cc-by-sa 4.0.

In the vast, grassy lowlands of the DRC’s Bandundu Province, we spotted a series of fires burning within a few kilometers of each other. Utah Jazz Initially, this massive blaze caught our eye:

The black earth created fresh burns contrasts to the brown patches of previous burns. Image captured on March 3, 2016. Image ©2016 Planet Labs, Inc. cc-by-sa 4.0.

The black earth created fresh burns contrasts to the brown patches of previous burns. Image captured on March 3, 2016. nike goedkoop online Image ©2016 Planet Labs, Inc. Womens Nike Roshe One cc-by-sa 4.0.

Then, as we looked closer, we saw this smaller fire:
A small burn at the edge of cleared pastureland captured on March 3, 2016. Image ©2016 Planet Labs, Inc. cc-by-sa 4.0.

A small burn at the edge of cleared pastureland captured on March 3, 2016. Matt Holliday Jersey Image ©2016 Planet Labs, Inc. cc-by-sa 4.0.

And another:
A small burn at the edge of cleared pastureland captured on March 3, 2016. Image ©2016 Planet Labs, Inc. cc-by-sa 4.0.

A small burn at the edge of cleared pastureland captured on March 3, 2016. Image ©2016 Planet Labs, Inc. cc-by-sa 4.0.

You’ll note all three fires are blazing in close proximity to older burn scars—a pattern indicative of prescribed burning. NIKE AIR ZOOM VOMERO 12

Deliberate burning is common to the grasslands and forests of Central Africa. kopen nike air max 2017 It’s typical for farmers, villagers and land managers to burn savannah land to refresh and re-seed mature pastureland.

In the height of the dry season, thousands of pasture fires can burn simultaneously across Central Africa:

In this MODIS image of Central Africa’s dry season, thousands of fires (marked by red dots) burn across Angola, Zambia and the DRC. Image: NASA MODIS Rapid Response

In this MODIS image of Central Africa’s dry season, thousands of fires (marked by red dots) burn across Angola, Zambia and the DRC. Image: NASA MODIS Rapid Response

Our always-on fleet of imaging satellites is getting closer and closer to imaging this region (and the entire Earth) once a day; we’re slated to reach this goal at the end of this year. So, on that rare day in the wet season, when there’s a hole in the cloud belt, clear imagery will be beamed down into the Planet Labs online platform, processed and ready for download just hours later.