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Forest stewardship

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Caring for and using the forest now while still ensuring its health and productivity into the future

Caring for and using the forest now while still ensuring its health and productivity into the future

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  • 1. 1 FOREST STEWARDSHIP Pennsylvania Forest Stewardship Program
  • 2. Forest Stewardship is about tending our forests for the future
  • 3. What We’ll Discuss • Importance of Forests • Need for Forest Stewardship • PA Forest Stewardship Program
  • 4. 4 THE IMPORTANCE OF FORESTS
  • 5. A forest is not just a group of trees. Forests are complex, biological systems. In healthy forests, diverse plant and animal communities interact in a web of life.
  • 6. Forests support a wide array of life, including birds such as the Ruffed Grouse….
  • 7. PhotoCourtesyKennethM.Gale,www.forestryimages.org, …plants, like this trillium,…
  • 8. Photo Courtesy of Dr. Margaret Brittingham, Professor of Wildlife Resources, Penn State School of Forest Resources …and many other forms of life, such as this white-footed mouse
  • 9. Dynamic Natural Forces Dead trees open up spaces for new trees to grow. An ice storm may damage and kill trees, but fallen branches provide tender twigs and buds on the forest floor which can help animals survive the winter.
  • 10. Deadwood can protect and enrich our soils. Decaying organic matter adds nutrients to forest soils. Cavities and shelter provide wildlife habitat The forest floor becomes a seed bed for some plants
  • 11. The forest helps protect water quality and support high- quality streams. Forests store and slowly release water to streams , helping prevent floods. Shade offers temperature control – keeps waters cool and oxygen levels high to support animals such as trout, that depend on cold waters.
  • 12. Forests sequester CO2. CO2 is a greenhouse gas. High levels of it contribute to global warning. Forests improve Air Quality
  • 13. PhotoCourtesyofBillyHumphries,ForestResourceConsultants,Inc., www.forestryimages.org Provides shade Offers windbreaks Forests help Regulate the Climate Local climate affects the regional, which in turn affects the global climate.
  • 14. Forests provide us with many recreational opportunities: Camping…
  • 15. …opportunities to observe wildlife…
  • 16. ….and provide a quiet haven – a respite from our fast-paced lives.
  • 17. Forests also supply us with the many wood products we use every day: Wood for construction
  • 18. Paper and paper products
  • 19. Timber and forest products is the fourth largest manufacturing industry in PA. These industries contribute $27.7 billion/year to the state’s economy, employing over 91,000 people Forests Support Jobs
  • 20. Tourism is Pennsylvania's second-largest industry. In 2012, it supported 298,193 jobs, or 4.1% of the state’s total employment , and it contributed $14.7 billion of the state’s 2012 Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Outdoor recreation, supported by healthy forests, is a major part of Pennsylvania’s economy.
  • 21. Forests also are the source of specialty products (like maple syrup and ginseng)
  • 22. Benefits from the forest depend on our use and care of the forest.
  • 23. 23 THE NEED FOR FOREST STEWARDSHIP
  • 24. What exactly is Forest Stewardship? Forest stewardship means using our forest resources in such a way that we can meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.
  • 25. Robert McCabe. Courtesy of the Aldo Leopold Foundation Archives Forest Stewardship is part of the land ethic – an idea popularized by Aldo Leopold in “Sand County Almanac.” Land management has an ethical component. We are caretakers, or stewards, of the land.
  • 26. Forest Stewardship implies giving back at least as much as we take. Pictures of Chestnut orchard, courtesy of Carl Martin, PAFS
  • 27. A brief history of our Pennsylvania forests will help illustrate why forest stewardship is so important today. Some History
  • 28. Mature forests were heavily and repeatedly cut
  • 29. To give you a sense of the scale of this activity, look at this picture from Williamsport in 1898. Logs were floated down river on the Susquehanna, sometimes completely covering the river.
  • 30. After the timber was removed, many of the lands were abandoned Intentional and unintentional fires burned large areas PA, 1918
  • 31. During the early part of the twentieth century fire prevention and conservation efforts helped stop abusive practices.
  • 32. Today’s forests have grown up almost entirely from abandoned farm fields and cut-over areas.
  • 33. Now there are new pressures on the forest for material, environmental and aesthetic resources. We need to manage forests, in accordance with sound biological principles: •To ensure perpetual health •To maximize productivity to meet society’s demands
  • 34. 71% 12% 9% 3% 5% Private Forest Landowners State Forest State Game Lands Allegheny National Forest Who Owns the Forest? In PA much of the harvesting pressure is on private forest landowners.
  • 35. Most industrial and government lands have management plans.
  • 36. About 10% of private forest landowners (PFLs) in PA had written forest management plans in a 2005 study. Only about 25% of PFLs sought forestry advice from a consulting forester; 9% from an industry forester; and 12% from a Bureau of Forestry forester. Picture courtesy of Carl Martin, PAFS.
  • 37. This tiny fraction of private forest landowners who seek professional help in managing their woodlands have a knowledge of and understand: • Forest ecology • The role of forester • Availability of assistance (much of it is free or low-cost)
  • 38. So to Summarize: We Need Forest Stewardship because • Private forest landowners have 12 million acres (over 70% of PA forests) • Public and forest industry-owned forest land generally have management plans • Private lands are not necessarily well-managed
  • 39. Private Forest Landowners’ Issues Many have: • No management plans at all • Not sure of their objectives • Don’t realize forest management can improve their woodlots for wildlife, timber, recreation • Don’t realize the financial value of their woodlands • Don’t understand sustainable forest management practices
  • 40. Well-intentioned but ill-informed landowners sometimes make decisions driven by profit alone. Their lack of knowledge leads to misuse by not considering: • Function of the forest within the landscape • Consequences of current actions on the future forest • Site productivity protection These decisions have environmental consequences on the forest’s future. A forest after high-grade cutting
  • 41. 41 THE PENNSYLVANIA FOREST STEWARDSHIP PROGRAM
  • 42. Forest Stewardship Program • Improve ecological health of private forestlands • Provide education and technical assistance • Encourage management plans • Voluntary
  • 43. The Forest Stewardship Program (FSP), now in all 50 states, hopes to persuade more landowners to enlist the aid of professionals in managing their forests.
  • 44. Forest Stewardship Program in PA In Pennsylvania, the program is administered by the Bureau of Forestry and Penn State’s School of Forest Resources Extension Funding comes from the US Forest Service to the State Bureau of Forestry and to Penn State
  • 45. Forest Stewardship Program Provides • Education and Awareness • Technical Assistance Pennsylvania Bureau of Forestry and the Penn State Forest Resources Extension cooperate to provide education and awareness about forest stewardship and the Forest Stewardship Program
  • 46. Education and Awareness • Publications • PowerPoint presentations • Website • Outreach and training • PA Forest Stewards volunteers • Support Woodland Owner Associations
  • 47. • Publications • PowerPoint presentations • Website • Outreach and training • PA Forest Stewards Program • Support for Woodland Owner Associations Education and Awareness
  • 48. Forest Leaves Newsletter Quarterly, free subscription by mail; monthly subscription online Over 15,000 Subscribers Partners: • PA DNCR Bureau of Forestry • Pennsylvania Forestry Association (PFA) • Tree Farm For free subscriptions visit the Forest Resources Extension website and search for ‘Forest Leaves’ or call the office at 1-800-235-9473
  • 49. Forest Stewardship Bulletins These discuss aspects of woodland management. Over a half-million free bulletins have been distributed Titles Include: • Wildlife • Planning your Forest’s Future • Watershed Management
  • 50. Pennsylvania Wildlife Series Though not funded by the Forest Stewardship Program, these publications are useful resources for forest landowners. Titles include: • Winter Bird Feeding: The Basics • Landscaping for Wildlife: Trees, Shrubs, and Vines • Wildlife-Habitat Relationships
  • 51. Forest Finance Series Funded by the College of Agricultural Sciences, this is another useful resource for forest landowners. Titles include: • Deer fencing • Record Keeping • Understanding Clean and Green Tax Incentive Program
  • 52. Invasive Species Fact Sheets Ag Sciences also publishes a series on invasive plants and insects Like weeds in farms and gardens, invasive species are undesirable or non-native plants and insects that are now in our forests. They can invade natural areas and interfere with forest regeneration.
  • 53. From the Woods Youth Series Designed primarily for youth but suitable for all ages. Titles include: • White-Tailed Deer • Watersheds • Harvesting Timber
  • 54. Timber Market Report The TMR gives landowners an idea of what the current timber market prices are. These can be found at: http://extension.psu.edu/natural- resources/forests/timber-market-report
  • 55. Other Publications Titles include: • Timber Taxation • Best Management Practices for PA Forests
  • 56. • Publications • PowerPoint presentations • Website • Outreach and training • PA Forest Stewards Program • Support for Woodland Owner Associations Education and Awareness
  • 57. Forest Stewardship Presentations • Biodiversity • Legacy Planning • Forest Marketing • Tree Identification • Living with Wildlife • Water Quality • Forest Stewardship • Forestry for Wildlife
  • 58. • Publications • PowerPoint presentations • Website • Outreach and training • PA Forest Stewards Program • Support for Woodland Owner Associations Education and Awareness
  • 59. http://extension.psu.edu/natural-resources • Wood Products • Forest Stewardship • Professional Development Program • Water Resources • Wildlife & Fisheries Science • Youth • Urban and Community Forestry
  • 60. County Economic Data Also on the website: Forest resources economic data available for all PA counties. This example from Clarion County shows: • Land Use: Forest 62%; • Forest Ownership: Private 83%; Forest industry 9%, Pubic Land 8% • Number of forest landowners: 8,300 • Number of forestry and wood products establishments: 34 • Economic contribution: $ 79.5 million
  • 61. Private Forest Landowners http://extension.psu.edu/natural-resources/forests/private • Program Information • Forest Steward Profiles • Woodlands Associations • Links • News and Events • Webinars and Publications
  • 62. • Publications • PowerPoint presentations • Website • Outreach and training • PA Forest Stewards Program • Support for Woodland Owner Associations Education and Awareness
  • 63. Outreach and Training • Workshops and Programs • Includes landowner conferences and workshops • Service Foresters and Extension Foresters • Offer programs and outreach Calendar of events in Forest Leaves Newsletter.
  • 64. Points of Contact • Bureau of Forestry Offices • County Extension Offices • Toll-Free Number: 1-800-235-9473
  • 65. • Publications • PowerPoint presentations • Website • Outreach and training • PA Forest Stewards Program • Support for Woodland Owner Associations Education and Awareness
  • 66. PA Forest Stewards Program A corps of volunteers who have been trained to help Sustain Private Forestlands by working with landowners to: • Better manage their own forestlands • Motivate others to practice stewardship Pennsylvania’s Program was adapted from successful woodland owner mentoring projects in other states.
  • 67. What Roles Do PA Forest Stewards Play? PAFSs communicate with landowners to help them understand their objectives, alternatives, and how to find appropriate assistance for implementing forest stewardship.
  • 68. How Does the Program Work? 40 Hours Training = Time requested in Outreach
  • 69. Training • Two weekends at residential camp (Must attend both weekends) • No cost to participants, except their own travel • Offered once a year Topics Covered include: • Tours and Demonstrations • Forest History • Water and Wildlife • Forest Ecology and Silviculture • Economic and Legal Issues
  • 70. Examples of Outreach Activities • Talking with neighbors • Supporting local/regional woodland owner associations • Working with children/schools • Presentations to adults • Writing and providing information to the media • Giving woodlot tours
  • 71. To Become a PA Forest Steward… 1. You must be nominated by one of the following: • Service forester • Current PA Forest Steward • Cooperative Extension agent 2. You fill out an application 3. If you are selected, you attend the 40 hours of training For more information, visit the website
  • 72. • Publications • PowerPoint presentations • Website • Outreach and training • PA Forest Stewards Program • Support for Woodland Owner Associations Education and Awareness
  • 73. Woodland Owners Associations • Independent nonprofit organizations • 20+ associations • Over 1200 members Where “The rubber meets the road” for Sustainable Forestry among Private Forest Landowners
  • 74. Who Belongs to Woodland Associations? • Private Forest Landowners • Non-landowners • Foresters • Businesses • Natural resource professionals Membership policies differ for each organizations.
  • 75. Who Runs Woodlands Associations? • Private • Independent • Non Profit • Self-supporting • Operated by members
  • 76. Benefits of Being Involved in a Woodlands Association • Educational programs • Tours • Demonstrations • Newsletters • Meetings
  • 77. Educational Programs A few examples include: • Tree and lumber grading • Reducing your tax liability • Forest surveying • Tree identification • Chainsaw safety • Forest pests Stream reconstruction, WOSA Tree measurements, North Central Forest Landowners Association
  • 78. Demonstrations • Horse logging • Maple syrup production • Controlling interfering plants • Tree planting • Wildlife habitat improvement • Pheasants • Ruffed grouse • etc….
  • 79. Tours • Chestnut plantation • Forestry demonstration woodlot • Sawmill • State timber sale • Private woodlots • etc…
  • 80. Another Benefit for Members of Woodland Owners’ Associations…. Interaction with other Owners • Sharing Experiences/Lessons Learned Interaction with Professionals • Developing a relationship with forestry professionals
  • 81. Forest Stewardship Program Provides • Education and Awareness • Technical Assistance Courtesy of Carl Martin, PAFS
  • 82. The hallmark of the program is a Forest Stewardship Plan that helps landowners meet their objectives for the land. USDA NRCS provides cost-share assistance to landowners to attain a CAP 106 plan – the current stewardship plan.
  • 83. The plan, based on owner’s objectives, can be a combination of: Pink lady slipper Environmental
  • 84. Recreational Aesthetic
  • 85. The plan recognizes the importance of the management of all resources. Or income-producing
  • 86. Natural Resource Professionals (NRPs) can help landowners: • Realize their objectives to the fullest extent possible • Ensure future health of the land and surrounding environment Get Assistance An NRP evaluates the forests’ resources and prepares a ten-year schedule of suggested activities or practices.
  • 87. Forest Stewardship plans can include a wide variety of beneficial practices…. Promote the growth of new forests
  • 88. Promote the growth of desirable tree species Stimulate regeneration Improve habitat for wildlife All photos courtesy of Carl Martin, PAFS
  • 89. Soil and water protection and improvement Planting permanent vegetative cover
  • 90. Design improvements such as : • forest roads • stream crossings • drainage systems • water diversion systems • stream fencing
  • 91. Riparian and wetland protection and improvements to: • Reduce sedimentation • Reduce stream-bank degradation • Improve water quality • Improve forested wetland productivity (wildlife, timber, water)
  • 92. Fisheries habitat enhancements: • Habitat improvement or modification • Spawning areas • Woody debris • Food supplies
  • 93. Wildlife habitat enhancements: • Cover • Forest openings • Corridors
  • 94. Other wildlife support: • Nesting • Food and water Establishing, protecting threatened or endangered species (both flora and fauna) Golden-Winged Warbler
  • 95. And forest recreation enhancements: • Paths, trails • Permanent vegetative cover
  • 96. Forest stewards may have different objectives, but they all have several traits in common: • Embrace a “land ethic”—a sense of wanting to do the right thing. • Recognize their need to understand how a forest ecosystem works. • Willing to seek the assistance of professionals • Understand that with rights come responsibilities Rights of private land ownership must be balanced with obligations to society, immediate and long-term (concern for future generations).
  • 97. Responsibilities include… …watershed protection… …wildlife habitat (creation and maintenance)…
  • 98. …an awareness of the neighboring environment and the role the land plays in the regional landscape… Susquehanna River
  • 99. …the need to keep the land healthy and productive…
  • 100. …the importance of balancing short-term gain with long-term financial potential and other benefits…
  • 101. ..and an appreciation for the aesthetic value of the land.
  • 102. Above all, forest stewards recognize that what they do with their forestland today will determine what kinds of forests will exist for future generations.
  • 103. Funding for development of the initial image set that served as a basis for this presentation was provided by: • NE Regional Center for Rural Development • Cooperative Extension at Penn State • University of Massachusetts • University of Connecticut QUESTIONS??

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