The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced an upcoming series of public meetings to provide stakeholders with the opportunity to offer input on the Forest Tax Law Program’s Section 480a.
The purpose of these meetings is to discuss areas of the program that could be improved including increasing compliance, reducing administrative burdens, and improving forestry outcomes. » Continue Reading.
The sound of a gray jay (Perisoreus canadensis) evokes an image of the North Woods: dark green spruce trees, spire-like balsam fir, and bare-branched tamaracks silhouetted against a raw, slate-colored sky; the smell of woodsmoke in the air and a dusting of fresh snow on the ground. I see these birds occasionally around our cabin in northern New Hampshire and on hikes at higher elevations in the White Mountains. They’ve always had an air of mystery about them.
The bird is often heard before it’s seen. The gray jay has a number of calls, whistles, and imitations in his repertoire: many are harsh sounding, and I have witnessed gray jays mimic the scream of the blue jay. My favorite call, though, is what some ornithologists refer to as “the whisper song.” This is a soft, warbling chatter that can sound either cheerful or melancholy – depending, I suppose, on the mood of the listener. Not long after hearing the whisper song, a group of birds will suddenly appear, silently swooping and gliding from branch to branch. » Continue Reading.
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is asking the public for input on the development of the draft Tug Hill East Unit Management Plan (UMP) and the East Branch Fish Creek Easement Recreation Management Plan (RMP). DEC has encouraged the public to share comments on the plans at a session on Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2018. » Continue Reading.
I must disagree with these suppositions by Mr. Canham. With millions of acres of state land preserved within the Adirondack Park and never to be managed (harvested), Adirondack Park Agency oversight of larger clear-cuts on non-state-owned lands, and best management practices in place for forest harvests, there should not be great concern for over-harvesting. This is not the days of old, when massive cuts were done on steep slopes with no effort to stabilize the soil. Methods are much more environmentally friendly these days. » Continue Reading.
New Yorkers think of the Adirondacks first and foremost as a preserve, but working forests on private lands have always been an important part of the Park. There has been a sea-change in ownership in recent years, with timber investment firms now controlling the bulk of working forests. And harvest rates throughout the Northeast have been steadily increasing.
So much so that logging rates are at unsustainably high levels in many places. This is most readily apparent to the public in the growing acreage of clear-cuts in the Adirondacks and Maine. But it doesn’t take clear-cutting to overharvest a region’s forests. Forest biomass is declining in Connecticut due to high-grading—the highly selective logging of just the largest and most valuable trees. To most foresters, that is a far worse sin than clear-cutting. » Continue Reading.
Over the years I have put my canoe into the waters at Low’s Lower Dam (constructed 1907); and paddled the meandering Bog River Flow up to Hitchins Pond.
I have carried around Low’s Upper Dam (built in 1903*), many times. I usually choose to camp on Low’s Lake, so I keep on going. But occasionally a day paddle and a short hike around Hitchins Pond is in order. It’s on these day paddles that I often walk the road (actually the old Maple Valley Railroad bed), as part of the Horse Shoe Forestry Company, constructed by Abbot Augustus “Gus” Low in 1900. If you know where to look, there are “sidings” where A. A. Low’s sugarhouses were located. » Continue Reading.
While some conservationists are concerned about what they perceive as recently increased logging in the Adirondack Park, New York’s Department of Environmental Conservation has begun providing more information about the nearly 781,000 acres of privately owned timberlands covered by state conservation easements.
Those agreements govern many of the larger logging tracts and prevent other commercial development. » Continue Reading.
The Tannery Pond Center (TPC) in North Creek is set to present “Local Logging Live! Along the Hudson,” celebrating the logging industry in local communities, both past and present, with activities taking place at both the Tannery Pond Community Center and Riverfront Park in North Creek on August 24th and 25th.
This event will showcase the cultural aspects of the industry and the major role played by the Hudson River. Planned are a variety of activities including musical concerts, historical displays and Gallery exhibit, multi-media lecture, mini woodsmen field day demonstrations, workshops on musical instruments of logging camps, buff mittens, blacksmithing and more. All daytime events are free. » Continue Reading.
At about 9 am on an overcast November Saturday, a group gathered at the edge of the local dump.
They sipped coffee, pulled on gloves, and adjusted ear protectors. Then they started to work. There were loggers, tree care experts, high school students, police officers, doctors, farmers, and lawyers. There were whole families, a guy on crutches, a few dogs, a legislator or two. By day’s end, they had cut and stacked more than 21 cords of firewood, and delivered most of it to the homes of their neighbors. What was left would be available throughout the winter to anyone with an unexpected need for fuel and a way to burn it. » Continue Reading.
The Empire State Forest Products Association, The Nature Conservancy and a bi-partisan group of state lawmakers as well as over 20 industry and conservation groups, have called on Governor Andrew Cuomo to fulfill his promise to reform the Forest Tax Abatement Program in the 2018 State Budget.
Coalition advocates say the existing law, the 480-a Timber Tax Law, is overly complicated, exacerbating the forest loss. » Continue Reading.
There is an exhibit in the Heron Gallery at the Paul Smith’s College VIC that everyone should go see. It is a collection of oil and watercolor paintings, poetry and written narrative that has great merit. This show would command respect no matter where it is exhibited, but it is especially relevant here in the Adirondacks, as it was in Vermont, it’s state of origin.
I’m primarily a landscape painter and one could say I choose to paint wilderness landscapes that are “pretty”. That’s not aways why I actually chose something as my subject matter, but it probably comes across that way. I don’t often paint anything that’s man-made or unattractive. » Continue Reading.
New York Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has announced February 3, 2017 as the application cutoff date for Signup 1 of the USDA’s Conservation Stewardship Program for Fiscal Year (FY) 2017.
The Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) is among the largest working-lands conservation programs in the United States. Through CSP, agricultural producers and forest landowners are paid for actively managing, maintaining, and expanding conservation activities like cover crops, rotational grazing, ecologically-based pest management, buffer strips, and pollinator and beneficial insect habitat – while maintaining active agricultural production on their land. » Continue Reading.
The Greater Adirondack Resource Conservation and Development Council, Inc. (RC & D), with financial assistance from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and the Lake Champlain Basin Program, is implementing a free Skidder Bridge Loaner Program for landowners and loggers.
RC & D says the free Skidder Bridge Loaner Program is hoping to encourage the use of the skidder bridges and other Best Management Practices in forest management to protect water quality and assist landowners in increasing economic activity in their communities. » Continue Reading.
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced that oak wilt, a tree fungus that causes disease in oak trees, has been detected in Canandaigua, Ontario County.
This is the third location in New York State where oak wilt has been confirmed and the second location discovered in 2016. The disease was confirmed in Islip earlier this year and had previously been found in Glenville in 2008 and 2013. » Continue Reading.
A Paul Smith’s College professor has been named as the institution’s first International Paper Endowed Professor in Forestry Economics. Dr. Brett McLeod, professor of Natural Resource Management and Policy and 2003 graduate of Paul Smith’s, was honored with the distinction last week during a ceremony at the college.
The $500,000 endowment from International Paper will allow McLeod to continue his work in natural resource economics for the remainder of his career at Paul Smith’s College and could also help attract world-class professors to fill the position when he retires. » Continue Reading.
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