The Forestry Source - October 2011 - (Page 1)
News for forest resource professionals published by the Society of American Foresters
October 2011 • Vol. 16, No. 10
Working to Restore Native Landscapes and the Forest Products Industry on the Delmarva Peninsula
I N T H I S I S S U E
2011 SAF vice-presidential election We have reprinted here the biographical information and campaign statements of the two candidates for SAF vice-president, along with their contact information. Members are encouraged to contact the candidates if they have questions about their experience or election platforms. Page 9. Science and tech: Questions about the climate of the Pacific Northwest. Climate changes are always occurring for a variety of reasons, and because predictions made using flawed computer models can be erroneous, we are offering Source readers a $100 bet. Page 12. Field Tech: Trimble’s rugged Yuma tablet PC offers portable computing power In reviewing products for the Field Tech column, I look for significant weaknesses that may affect a product’s utility. With the Yuma, I found none. Page 13. GIS for Foresters: Standardizing species codes using the NRCS PLANTS database When a specific “lingo” is applied to a GIS database, these local variations are often incorporated as quasi-standards that only local users can understand. But if a standard convention were applied to the database, the spatial data would be more open and understandable. But whose standard should be adopted? Page 14. Goldspotted oak borer hitches ride in firewood, kills oaks The case of the goldspotted oak borer (GSOB) provides a dramatic illustration of the risks associated with the movement of firewood. Page 20.
By Joseph M. Smith lthough harvesting trees to restore native ecosystems may seem counter-intuitive to some, to Delaware Wild Lands, a nonprofit organization working to conserve natural areas “through the acquisition and management of strategic parcels of land,” it’s the key to re-establishing native forests on select sites within the Great Cypress Swamp. At 10,500 acres, the Great Cypress Swamp is Delaware Wild Lands’s largest contiguous holding, thereby making the organization perhaps the largest single owner of contiguous forestland in the Delmarva Peninsula (an area that includes most of Delaware and portions of Maryland and Virginia). Moreover, Delaware Wild Lands’s swamp holdings represent the lion’s share of what was once a 50,000- to 60,000-acre swamp dominated by Atlantic white cedar and bald cypress. Among the organization’s goals is the restoration of this native wetland forest. To do this, Delaware Wild Lands has contracted with Vision Forestry, LLC, of Salisbury, Maryland, which developed a forest management plan to guide the conversion of more than 300 acres from pine-hardwood stands back to stands of Atlantic white cedar and bald cypress. The organization’s other partners include the Delaware Center for Inland
Per the management plan developed by Vision Forestry, LLC, for the conservation organization Delaware Wild Lands, this 47-acre site in Delaware’s Great Cypress Swamp was harvested and then planted with Atlantic white cedar seedlings.
Bays, Ducks Unlimited, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, and the US Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service. According to Peter Martin, Delaware Wild Lands field ecologist, the organization’s first efforts at reforestation and restoration focused on planting bald cypress in natural openings and abandoned
agricultural fields. Since then, the organization has taken a different, more aggressive approach. “Our initial efforts were ‘piecemeal’ in nature and included conversion of agricultural lands to plantings of bald cypress and Atlantic white cedar, water-control (See “Delmarva” page 3)
Texas Burning: Exceptional Drought, Record Fire Season
s bad as the damage from tornadoes, hurricanes, tropical storms, and other disasters has been in the eastern half of the United States this year, Texas, which is the midst of one of the most severe droughts in its recorded history, may be worse off than any other
state. From January 1 to September 15, more than 22,600 wildland fires burned nearly 3.8 million acres in the Lone Star State, destroying at least 2,690 homes and killing four people. (See “Texas” page 4)
Retirees’ Report: Forest Service Falling behind in Reforestation
D E PA RT M E N T S
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Editor’s Notebook In Brief Industry News Society Affairs Science and Tech Field Tech Classifieds
Burnt houses near Possum Kingdom Lake, about 90 miles west of Fort Worth, Texas, in May. From January 1 to September 15, wildland fires burned nearly 3.8 million acres in Texas.
By Steve Wilent, Source editor recent report issued by the National Association of Forest Service Retirees (NAFSR, www.fsx.org) describes “a disturbing trend in growth of reforestation needs over the past decade” on US Forest Service lands. The report also highlights a lack of information about such needs based on ground-based surveys. “Our collective experience with similar reforestation issues in the past added to our concerns that history may be repeating itself,” states the report. “There are vast burned areas, a result of the many massive fires of the past two decades, which have not been properly evaluated on the ground by qualified personnel for reforestation needs. Many of these areas exist within designated roadless areas. Without the proper monitoring and evaluation following disturbances, such as fire and insect infestations, it is not possible to determine if National Forest land management goals are being met.” Among the NAFSR’s recommendations: the agency should complete fieldbased evaluations of reforestation needs (See “Report” page 5)
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The Forestry Source - October 2011
Science and Tech
The Forestry Source - October 2011
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