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Slow the spread of invasive species by keeping firewood local

Published by Central Office May 23, 2017

Contact(s): Andrea Diss-Torrance, DNR Invasive Forest Insect Program Coordinator, 608-264-9247

MADISON - People heading out camping this Memorial Day weekend and through the summer can do their part to protect Wisconsin's urban and wildland trees by burning firewood locally, and not moving it from location to location.

"Keeping firewood local is one way everyone can do their part to protect Wisconsin's forests," Andrea Diss-Torrance, invasive forest pest program coordinator with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

For people camping at state parks and forests, state law requires any firewood brought to a property be from within 10 miles of the campground and be from outside of a quarantined area in Wisconsin or another state [PDF], unless the property is also within a quarantined area. Firewood certified by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection that has been processed to kill potential pests and diseases hiding inside is also acceptable.

People coming to camp at state parks should buy their wood at the park and not transport wood from other areas to avoid spreading invasive species.
People coming to camp at state parks should buy their wood at the park and not transport wood from other areas to avoid spreading invasive species.
Photo Credit: DNR

Most state park and forest campgrounds have firewood available for sale, with hours of firewood sales varying by property. Check on firewood availability by searching the DNR website, dnr.wi.gov, for "find a park." Choose a park or forest property from the dropdown menus. If the property offers camping, click on the link for "camping information."

People can also use the national Firewood Scout website, www.firewoodscout.org, to check where firewood is available. Firewood Scout is operated by a nonprofit organization established to help people buy firewood locally. The Department of Natural Resources does not verify the accuracy of firewood listings outside of state-managed properties.

Firewood Scout also offers information on invasive species of concern and a set of questions consumers can ask to help assure the wood they purchase is at low risk for spreading invasive insects and diseases.

"Firewood Scout is an excellent outreach tool that raises awareness of invasive species issues while also empowering people with the necessary information to be part of the solution. That is a recipe for success," said Diss-Torrance.

For more information on the risks of moving firewood, or firewood rules in Wisconsin, go to the DNR website, dnr.wi.gov, and search keyword "firewood."

Last Revised: Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Contact information

For more information about news and media, contact:
James Dick
Director of Communications
608-267-2773