RUTLAND, Vt. — The U.S. Forest Service says between 200 and 600 acres in the Green Mountain National Forest are going to be burned with prescribed fires as part of a project designed to improve wildlife habitat.

The fires, in only a small portion of the 400,000-acre national forest, will reduce heavy accumulations of grass and brush to reduce the potential for large uncontrollable wildfires, to restore critical wildlife habitat, regenerate some vegetation and improve overall watershed conditions.

The forest service says the prescribed fires are not likely to affect local residents, although smoke will be visible from the surrounding area and nearby residents may smell smoke.

The timing of the burns will depend on weather and vegetation conditions.

Additional details will be released closer to the planned dates of the fires.