Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 33

Over the past century, our forests have been on a continuous trend into older age classes. Trees growing older seems normal, but in the past several decades, we have gone through a significant shift away from younger forests into older forests. The same trend is occurring throughout the Northeastern states. With that shift comes a change in which species of wildlife can flourish, and how many can be supported. Our young forests are now at their lowest percentage since the industrial revolution, and the decline in the associated wildlife is on the same trajectory. And for some, it has become critical. What can be done? The Game Commission manages forested Game Lands to create young forests, last year creating about 6,000 new acres of young forest habitat and maintaining another 140,000 acres of young forests and woody openings. The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and Allegheny National Forest manage additional public land in young forest stages. However, because more than 85 percent of the state is in private ownership, it’s vitally important for wildlife’s sake that more owners of private land create and maintain young forests on their properties. There are more than 600,000 forest landowners in Pennsylvania, with the average forest ownership of about 20 acres. This presents a great opportunity for landowners, especially those who can manage 20 or more acres, that want to improve forestland for young forest dependent wildlife to have a real affect on the forest landscape. The most common forest management involves cutting existing trees. This can be done
SEVERAL programs are in place to help private landowners develop young forest habitat on their properties.

by commercial harvests for saw logs, wood chips or firewood, or a noncommercial harvest by a contractor or by the landowner. Depending on landowner goals, many options may be available, ranging from clearcutting, to seed-tree harvests, to thinnings to various shelterwood harvests. The goal is always to regenerate a new crop of trees, and the appropriate harvest depends on the site qualities and trees present. Wildlife and forestry professionals are available to discuss these options with landowners. If you’re interested, start by contacting your regional PGC office and asking for the private lands biologist. Why should I do it? Pennsylvania has a long history of harvesting forests. It has not always been done sustainably, and in many cases we are still paying the price for poor timber management, but well planned timber harvests are a great way of creating needed wildlife habitat. In the past this type of habitat creation has been called Early Successional Habitat or ESH, and has been done to encourage wildlife that prefer it, like white-tailed deer and black bear, but it is also a habitat requirement for many other wildlife that have declining populations.
Mike Pruss

MARCH  2012 

33



Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012

Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012
History of the Whitetail
Contents
Slow Down
Unconventional Calling Bags Bedford County Longbeard
Cabling with Grandsons
Dumpster Bears
Two for a Turkey
Operation Talon
Passing It On
Hunting Small Woods Turkeys
Gene Nelson — Man Who Didn’t Quit
How Young is that Forest?
Field Notes
Conservation News
Off the Wire
Another View
The Naturalist’s Eye
Straight from the Bowstring
Fun Game
Lock, Stock & Barrel
Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - History of the Whitetail
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Slow Down
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 6
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Unconventional Calling Bags Bedford County Longbeard
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 8
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Cabling with Grandsons
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 11
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Dumpster Bears
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 13
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 14
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 16
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Two for a Turkey
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 18
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 19
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Operation Talon
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 21
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Passing It On
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 23
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 24
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Hunting Small Woods Turkeys
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 26
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 27
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 28
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Gene Nelson — Man Who Didn’t Quit
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 30
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - How Young is that Forest?
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 33
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 34
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Field Notes
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 36
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 37
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 38
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 39
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Conservation News
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 41
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 44
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 45
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 46
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 47
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 48
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Off the Wire
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Another View
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 51
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 52
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - The Naturalist’s Eye
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 54
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 55
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 56
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Straight from the Bowstring
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 59
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Fun Game
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Lock, Stock & Barrel
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 64a
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - 64b
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2012 - Cover4
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