Forest Management Videos

Adaptive Forest Management Under Conservation Easement

2021
Conservation easements are a viable tool for forest and agricultural land protection. However, forest landowners have been slow to adopt the practice due to lingering misconceptions about accompanying constraints as well, perhaps, perceived misalignment of values between current owners and those who wish to conserve wooded landscapes. In the past, objective statements for individual conservation easements sought to conserve a broad suite of values; however, over time through lessons learned by conservancies and land trusts, objective statements for easements have tended to be more focused. While this should simplify easement enforcement and monitoring, it has led to less flexibility for both landowners and conservation organizations. There is a clear need to create conservation easements designed specifically for working forests that allow for adaptive management especially under changing ecological conditions (e.g., invasive species, climate change) as well as changing norms and expectations held by future owners and conservancy staff. While there are tools for adapting forest management that fit current and changing needs, many conservancies may lack the technical capacity or staff hours to implement and monitor easements that allow for adaptive changes imposed by changing objectives, ownership, and even unexpected external ecological conditions that will change conservation values. This workshop will share the results of an applied research project bench-marking conservation organizations from around the US that focus their protection strategies on working forests, as well the results of a recent survey of Pennsylvania’s land trusts and conservancies to assess current modes of engagement with adaptive management on forested properties. In the second half we will hold a facilitated discussion to understand land trust and conservancy needs and resources that may assist with forest management under conservation easement, and opportunities to adapt existing models in use today.
Last Modified
May 07, 2024
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Transforming a Conifer Monoculture to a Mixed-Species Forest

2020
Bear Run Nature Reserve, Fayette County, contains approximately 99 acres of planted conifer stands comprised of native eastern white pine, non-native Norway spruce, and non-native pines. Management goals for the reserve include converting these stands to native mixed-deciduous forest, conserving late-successional and mature forest, and controlling exotic invasive species. After considering various options for implementation, a process for gradual conversion was selected. In early 2019, small gaps were created within the conifer stands through a combination of cutting/dropping and girdling. During this session, our methodology and initial results will be presented.
Last Modified
May 07, 2024
Viewed
48 times