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ARCHIVED Weekly News Published May 20, 2014

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Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota launch campaign to prevent spread of aquatic invasive species

MADISON - Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota share many of the same boaters and anglers - now they're sharing the same message to help protect their iconic waters from aquatic invasive species such as Eurasian water-milfoil, zebra mussels and spiny water fleas.

The states are teaming up on a new public service campaign to help carry a consistent message encouraging boaters and anglers to take steps to avoid accidentally spreading zebra mussels, spiny water fleas and other invasive aquatic species when they travel among states.

A 30-second television spot began airing May 19 on fishing shows across the region. The spot is available on WIDNRTV, Wisconsin's YouTube channel, and on Minnesota DNR, and also is embedded on the agencies' web pages and shared by a network of partner groups across the states.

"We share a common goal of stopping aquatic hitchhikers to keep our Great Lakes and our inland waters healthy," says Department of Natural Resources Secretary Cathy Stepp. "By pooling our resources we can help reach more people with an important reminder as they travel back and forth."

Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Commissioner Tom Landwehr says the Minnesota DNR "welcomes every opportunity to work with other states on AIS prevention measures and this multi-state production is a fitting example. It offers a consistent message and a coordinated approach to effectively address the tough issue of AIS."

Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Director Dan Wyant invites partner organizations and individuals to share the video to spread awareness. "We encourage boaters to take action by cleaning equipment to prevent the spread of invasive species in our states."

Wisconsin and other Great Lakes states have been increasingly trying to work across the region to meet the challenges of invasive species, nonnative species that can cause environmental or economic harm or harm to human health. Outreach was fertile ground for such cooperation, says Bob Wakeman, who coordinates aquatic invasive species efforts for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and who had the idea for the tri-state public service message.

"With the help of our partners and on-site recruiting, we were able to capture a wide diversity of people who enjoy our waters," Wakeman says. "We think it's one of the strengths of the video: seeing and hearing average Wisconsinites, Minnesotans and Michiganders on why they love their waters and why it's important to protect them."

Marjorie Casey, Minnesota DNR aquatic invasive species information officer, says the multi-state public service announcement "is a good reminder for everyone to read and understand local AIS laws wherever they travel.

"The prevention requirements are slightly different across the three states, and the AIS laws for each state are available online."

Michigan's Wyant says that by taking a few minutes to clean boats, trailers, and other fishing equipment and drain water from their boat and fishing equipment, "we can all help keep our Great Lakes healthy and protect our inland waters."

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Bob Wakeman, Wisconsin DNR aquatic invasive species coordinator, 262-719-0740; Sarah LeSage, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality aquatic invasive species coordinator, 512-284-5472; Marjorie Casey, Minnesota DNR aquatic invasive species information officer, 651-259-5132; Ann Pierce, Minnesota DNR, Ecological and Water Resources section manager, 651-259-5119

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Wisconsin, other Great Lakes states team up to fight aquatic invasive species

CHICAGO - A tri-state public service announcement is just the latest example of Wisconsin teaming up with neighboring states to help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species.

While Wisconsin continues to work with its partners at home to meet the challenges of aquatic invasive species in its inland waters, the state is forging ahead with new regional efforts aimed at pooling resources and efforts to better and more efficiently protect the Great Lakes from new invaders, state environmental officials say. In turn, those efforts will better protect inland waters as well.

"Stopping aquatic invasive species is all about shutting down pathways and it must be a focus for our nation, the Great Lakes region and Wisconsin," says Department of Natural Resources Water Administrator Russ Rasmussen. "This is something we can all unite behind. Together, we can work smarter, more efficiently, and more effectively to achieve our common goals."

Examples of such recent regional collaboration include:

Wisconsin has for decades been working with states and federal agencies involved in managing the Mississippi River and Great Lakes to address aquatic invasive species, including keeping Asian carp from getting established in the Upper Mississippi River and in the Great Lakes. The two basins are artificially connected through the Chicago waterway system.

The new regional efforts are aimed at protecting these regionally important waters from Asian carp and other new invasive species and by default, will better protect states' inland waters as well, says Bob Wakeman, DNR's aquatic invasive species coordinator.

Since the 1800s, more than 180 aquatic invasive species have been documented in the Great Lakes, and 30 of those species have been spread to Wisconsin inland waters. Wisconsin research has shown that boaters are the primary way that aquatic invasive species spread from one water to another.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Bob Wakeman, DNR, 262-719-0740

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State Natural Resources Board to meet May 27-29 in Green Bay

GREEN BAY -- Recommendations for the 2014 deer hunting seasons - including a zero antlerless deer quota for 19 counties in the northern and central forest zones - will be considered by the Natural Resources Board when it meets May 28 in Green Bay.

A proposal on the fishing tactic known as "trolling" is also on the agenda. Currently trolling - trailing a lure or bait from a boat being propelled by means other than drifting or rowing - is allowed in some counties and banned in others.

The seven-member board, which sets policy for the Department of Natural Resources, will be in Green Bay during the three-day period May 27-29 with a full slate of activities.

At 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 27, the board meets informally with the Wisconsin Conservation Congress Executive Council

Various presentations and tours are set for Thursday, May 29, including a First Down for Trees event at 10 a.m. at Lambeau Field featuring members of the Green Bay Packer organization, veteran players and remarks by DNR secretary Cathy Stepp.

Also on Thursday's itinerary are the early morning boat launch and afternoon weigh-in for the first day of the Cabela's National Team Championship walleye fishing tournament, presentations on environmental permitting associated with work on the Leo Frigo Bridge and the restoration of the Cat Island Chain in the bay.

For its monthly business meeting, the board will convene at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, May 28, at the Tundra Lodge and Conference Center at 865 Lombardi Ave. in Green Bay.

Individuals with any concerns they would like to bring to the attention of the board are welcome to speak. The registration deadline for the May 28 business meeting is 11 a.m. Friday, May 23.

To register, contact Laurie Ross, NRB liaison, at 608-267-7420, or by email at laurie.ross@wisconsin.gov.

DNR wildlife managers will ask the board to approve recommendations for the 2014 deer hunting seasons, including a zero quota for antlerless deer in 19 counties.

Two consecutive harsh winters, when combined with other factors, have resulted in low deer numbers in the northern forest and central forest zones. The zero antlerless quotas mean most hunters will not have the option of harvesting an antlerless deer in the affected counties and will help the deer population recover in these areas. The entire state will remain open for buck hunting.

The proposal on trolling was previously considered by the board in June 2013. Additional public input was sought at the spring fish and wildlife hearings in April 2014 where the proposal was largely supported statewide with 61 counties in favor and 11 opposed.

Currently trolling - trailing a lure or bait from a boat being propelled by means other than drifting or rowing - is allowed on all waters in 18 counties and on 105 specific waters within 45 counties where trolling is not allowed county-wide.

Generally, the proposal would allow trolling with one line per angler on all waters in 17 counties and trolling with up to three lines per angler in all other counties.

The board will consider a DNR request to add the Blanding's turtle to the state's protected wild animal list.

The board will be asked to approve a series of modifications to administrative rules as required by Section 103 of 2013 Wisconsin Act 1, the ferrous mining law. This list of modifications will bring administrative code into line with state law.

The full agenda of action items, along with supporting documents, can be found by searching the DNR website dnr.wi.gov for keyword "NRB."

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Laurie Ross 608-267-7420 or Ed Culhane, 715781-6833

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Public comment period open for invasive species rule changes

MADISON - A proposal to add more than 80 new species to the list of restricted and prohibited invasive species in Wisconsin is now open for public comment and will be the subject of two public hearings to be held in June. The comment period is open until June 30, 2014.

In April, the state Natural Resources Board approved a request from the Department of Natural Resources to take proposed revisions to the state's invasive species rule, Chapter NR 40 of the Wisconsin Administrative Code, to public hearings. Revisions include adding the new species to the list and changing the regulatory status of several species including emerald ash borer for the state.

Currently, the emerald ash borer, a beetle, responsible for the destruction of tens of thousands of ash trees in Wisconsin, is classified as a prohibited species. Under the rule, prohibited species are those that are not widespread in the state and whose spread can be prevented or limited to certain areas using eradication methods. Since the first discovery of EAB in Wisconsin in 2008, and its listing as a prohibited species in 2009, it has spread to 19 counties prompting a proposal to change EAB regulatory status to restricted.

Restricted species are those already found in the state and may be more widespread. Eradication is improbable but the spread can still be managed. Measures to manage the spread of EAB will still be used, such as Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection quarantines and DNR firewood transportation restrictions. Under the proposed revisions to NR 40, possession is not prohibited and control is not required for restricted species.

The proposed rule and supporting documents, including the fiscal estimate, may be viewed and downloaded from the Administrative Rules System website.

The public hearings will be held:

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Dreux Watermolen, social science services section chief invasive.species@wisconsin.gov 608-266-8931

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This holiday, remember to get your firewood where you burn it

MADISON - State forest health specialists remind campers and travelers that firewood can carry harmful forest insects and diseases. "Insect pests such as emerald ash borer and gypsy moth, and diseases like oak wilt and Dutch elm disease spread to new areas easily while hidden in firewood," said Colleen Robinson Klug, DNR forest health educator. "These invasive species have already killed millions of trees in Wisconsin."

Certified firewood
Certified firewood label.
WDNR Photo

The only exception is firewood Certified by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (exit DNR). Certified wood is free to move around the state because it is also free of invasive pests and diseases that harm our trees. Certified wood will either have a label like the one in the photo, or will just have the DATCP certified vendor number. A list of certified dealers and their ID numbers is available online at emeraldashborer.wi.gov under "Firewood Regulations".

Firewood regulations tighten as of June 1, 2014

The invasive species threat to public land we all share in Wisconsin is increasing. To help protect these areas better, after June 1 firewood will only be allowed on state managed properties if it is:

  1. from within 10 miles of the property, AND
  2. from outside an area quarantined for emerald ash borer [PDF] (exit DNR), (unless the property is also in the same or a connected quarantined area) OR
  3. certified by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (see link above) or certified by the USDA as treated to emerald ash borer standards.

Most state parks and forests have certified firewood or firewood from the property for sale on site. To check availability, contact the property by searching the DNR website dnr.wi.gov for "parks." Many federal, county and private campgrounds also restrict firewood on their properties. Call for details before you travel.

For more details about firewood in Wisconsin search the DNR website dnr.wi.gov for keyword "firewood" or call 1-877-303-WOOD (9663).

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Colleen Robinson Klug, DNR Forest Health Educator, 608-266-2172

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Consider treating your ash trees for emerald ash borer this spring

MADISON -- Emerald ash borer is currently the most damaging threat to trees in Wisconsin, according to state forest health specialist who say spring is the best time of year to take actions to protect ash trees.

What you should know

Woodpecker damage
Woodpecker damage.

Know where the pest has been found and look for the signs and symptoms of infestation. "Many people notice a thinning ash canopy, but not until it is too late to effectively treat trees, so it is very important to examine your ash trees early and often," says Bill McNee, forest health specialist with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. Spring is a great time to start. Watch ash trees for the following:

Photos and more information are online at emeraldashborer.wi.gov (exit DNR).

What you should do

Sprouting
Sprouting.

If you see the signs or symptoms above, get more information or advice and then consider treating your ash tree. Spring is the best time to treat, but the decision to use insecticides is an important one that should not be taken lightly. "Know the facts about your tree's health and the various treatment options before investing in any treatments," says Dr. Chris Williamson, UW-Extension Entomology Specialist.

Remember, this pest only attacks ash trees, and mountain ash is not a true ash.

More information, including UW-Extension emerald ash borer factsheets labs.russell.wisc.edu/eab/ about treatment considerations are available at emeraldashborer.wi.gov. To get more advice, you can find a certified arborist in your area at the Wisconsin Arborist Association's website: www.waa-isa.org or in your yellow pages. (all links exit DNR)

Consider the following when deciding whether or not to treat your ash tree

Research shows ash trees can be successfully protected from damage and death due to EAB, but not in all cases. Careful planning is required.

Tree value

D-shaped exit hole
D-shaped exit hole
  1. Determine whether the ash tree is worth treating. Some ash trees are already heavily infested with EAB, too sick to effectively treat, or have major structural problems. Ash trees suffer from many health threats, so knowing as much as you can about the overall health of the tree is an important first step.
  2. IF your tree is healthy it may offer benefits such as increased property value, shade and cooling, and it may contribute to the quality of life in a neighborhood. Consider these benefits along with the cost of treatment.

EAB threat to the tree

  1. Currently, experts recommend that property owners consider treatment if their ash tree is within 15 miles of a known infestation. You can look up communities where EAB has been found at emeraldashborer.wi.gov.
EAB
Emerald ash borer

The cost of options

If EAB is a threat to your tree you can do nothing and take the risk that your tree will eventually die, you can treat your tree if it is still healthy enough, or you can take the tree down and remove it.

  1. The cost of an insecticide treatment can depend on tree size and health condition.
  2. The options for treatment require ongoing commitment. Almost all insecticide options require you to repeat treatment annually. One option called "Treeage" offers three years of protection but can only be applied by a licensed professional.
  3. The cost of removing or replacing trees should also be weighed. You may be able to treat your tree for many years and spend less money than it would cost to remove that tree.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Bill McNee, Wisconsin DNR, 920-893-8543 or Chris Williamson, University of Wisconsin Extension, 608-262-4608

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Early teal season and extended dove season proposed for Wisconsin

MADISON - Wisconsin would be able to offer an experimental early teal-only duck hunting season that would begin September 2014, under a proposal that is open for public comment and will be subject of upcoming public hearings.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service established an experimental framework that will require each season during the initial three-year period to be scheduled in September prior to Wisconsin's regular duck season. Throughout this period, the wildlife biologists would be required to monitor and report hunter success, which will determine the success of the early season.

During 2013 and early 2014, DNR staff presented information in public meetings, advisory committee meetings and special breakout sessions at the waterfowl hunter's conference and gathered feedback with a waterfowl hunter survey.

Based on preliminary public input and staff analyses, the department has proposed the following season structure for public comment:

In addition to the proposed early teal season, the USFWS will also allow Wisconsin to add an additional 20 days to the end of the current 70-day dove hunting season. Public comments on this change will also be accepted.

Public hearings on the proposals will all run from 7 to 10 p.m. and will be held:

The DNR will accept public comments on the proposed early teal season and extended dove season through June 5, 2014. Comments may be directed to Taylor Finger, Wisconsin DNR, PO Box 7921, Madison, WI 53707, by email to Taylor.finger@wisconsin.gov, or by calling 608-261-6458.

Results of the hearings will be presented to the Natural Resources Board on June 25 for a final decision.

For more information regarding the proposed early teal season, search the DNR website dnr.wi.gov for "teal proposal [PDF]." For more information regarding dove hunting in Wisconsin, search keyword "dove."

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Kent Van Horn, DNR wildlife ecologist, 608-266-8841

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Work set to start on $3.7 million education center additions at Horicon Marsh

Visitor center to remain partially open during construction but DNR service center will temporarily close starting June 1

HORICON, Wis. -- A charging woolly mammoth, old-fashioned hunting camp and talking Clovis point will soon greet visitors to the Horicon Marsh Education and Visitor Center, thanks to a $3.7 million public-private effort to depict the wetland's dramatic history.

Construction of the new educational displays and hands-on exhibits will take over the center's main level on June 1 and continue in phases through August 2015. The exhibits will occupy portions of both the first floor and lower level, which opens onto a trail system winding through the 11,000 acre state marsh.

"We're grateful for the support we've received and excited to get this project underway," said Bret Owsley, Horicon area supervisor for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. "We think the result will truly benefit the community as our visitor numbers are projected to increase from the current 50,000 per year to 150,000 within the first three years. In addition to growing numbers of school groups, we anticipate seeing more families and individuals interested in Wisconsin's natural heritage."

Although restrooms and some public spaces in the building will remain open, the construction will force the temporary suspension of DNR counter service from June 1 to approximately July 7. Alternatively, many businesses in Dodge County offer hunting and fishing licenses sales as well as vehicle and boat registrations. For a complete list, search the DNR website dnr.wi.gov for "sales locations" or contact the DNR Call Center toll free at 1-888-936-7463.

In the meantime, work on the enhanced education center will continue. The existing structure was completed in 2009, but portions of the building were left largely unfinished until the planning for the interpretive displays was completed.

Owlsey said nearly $1 million in private donations from the Friends of Horicon Marsh Education and Visitor Center helped leverage state support to reach the $3.7 million goal. The new education and visitor amenities will build on two existing classrooms and an auditorium already in use for lectures and public events.

As part of the nation's largest freshwater cattail marsh - the Horicon Marsh State Wildlife Area borders an additional 22,000-acre Horicon National Wildlife Refuge (exit DNR) managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service - the history of Horicon spans some 12,000 years. In the new exhibits, that story will be eloquently narrated by a Clovis point arrowhead.

"The arrowhead points us to important events in the history of the marsh, from the time the glacier receded through today," Owsley said. "The Clovis point has witnessed these changes and survives to share the story of the marsh with new generations."

Horicon Marsh started as a network of rivers and wetlands left behind by receding glaciers and grew into the world's largest man-made lake after early settlers built a dam to power a sawmill in the 1840s. When the state Supreme Court ordered the dam removed in 1869, the marsh quickly returned and began drawing huge flocks of migratory waterfowl and other birds.

After market hunting depleted the bird populations, a short-lived attempt to ditch and drain the marsh for farming from 1910 to 1914 ended in failure. Then, during the 1920s, conservation-minded citizens pressed the Legislature for support and started a restoration process that continues to this day.

Drawing on this history, highlights of the new exhibits include:

"Thanks to input from a variety of stakeholders, we believe the exhibits will offer something for everyone while encouraging people to explore the marsh itself," Owsley said. "We look forward to welcoming the public once the work is completed in late summer of 2015. And we appreciate everyone's patience with the temporary service center changes."

Members of the public are encouraged to call ahead to 1-888-936-7463 to obtain contact information before planning to meet with regional DNR personnel as some staff members will be stationed in other offices during the construction process.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Bret Owsley, 920-210-2451, Bret.Owsley@Wisconsin.gov; or Jennifer Sereno, communications, 608-770-8084, Jennifer.Sereno@wisconsin.gov

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REWARD: DNR and DQ team up to offer free safety cones

MADISON - People who enjoy recreational boating or all-terrain vehicle use will want to watch for a new kind of safety cone out on Wisconsin trails and waterways this spring.

To encourage safety on a variety of recreational vehicles, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is teaming up with Wisconsin DQ's to hand out coupons good for a free soft serve cone to youth demonstrating responsible habits and courteous behavior. The coupons can be redeemed at any of the more than 120 DQ's conveniently located statewide.

"We're proud of the outdoor ethic among our young recreational enthusiasts and our law enforcement officers are excited to begin this partnership," says Roy Zellmer, warden supervisor with the DNR Bureau of Law Enforcement. "We all want to keep young people safe and thanks to the support from Dairy Queen, we have a new way to reward them for doing the right things."

What are some of the positive choices on the DNR's "most wanted" list of good behaviors? Zellmer says most kids probably already know the answers:

James Braasch, North Central marketing spokesman for Dairy Queen, says a similar safety rewards program piloted with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has generated positive results. The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board recently approved a $75,000 donation from the company to fund the project here.

"On behalf of the Wisconsin DQ franchisees, we are pleased to partner with the Wisconsin DNR to encourage respect for our natural resources and support positive interactions with law enforcement," Braasch says. "Together, we hope the effort promotes safety and encourages good citizenship with our fans in the communities we serve."

The program runs throughout the year and wardens will be carrying the free safety cone coupons with them as they traverse the state's waters, woods and trails. While the initial focus will be geared toward youth on all-terrain vehicles, utility vehicles and watercraft, wardens will look for young snowmobile riders to reward later in the year.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Roy Zellmer, warden supervisor, DNR Bureau of Law Enforcement, (608) 212-5385; Penny Kanable, recreational boating program, DNR Bureau of Law Enforcement, (608) 228-9352 or Jennifer Sereno, communications, (608) 770-8084.

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Private demolition and burning of old buildings prohibited in Wisconsin

Burning old structures can release harmful amounts of asbestos

MADISON -- People looking to get rid of an old building on property in Wisconsin need to find an option that doesn't include torching it.

Landowners, contractors and businesses are being cautioned against structure burns not only because they are illegal in Wisconsin, but also because burning is the least environmentally healthy way to dispose of old buildings, due to the high potential of releasing harmful asbestos into the air.

"With the exception of authorized fire training burns conducted by fire departments, it is illegal to burn any structures or buildings in Wisconsin," said Mark Davis, statewide asbestos coordinator for the Department of Natural Resources.

Fire department burns may only be conducted on standing structures that offer some training value. Buildings cannot be burned for the sole purpose of waste reduction or by anyone other than a fire department, emphasized Davis.

Under state law, fire departments and or building owners must have the building inspected for asbestos by a state-certified asbestos inspector prior to any training burn, and they must file an official form 10 working days prior to the desired burn date.

The asbestos inspections range from $350-$1,000, depending on the number of building materials to be sampled, with sample analysis for asbestos costing from $15-$30 per sample. If asbestos is found, it must be removed in its entirety before a training burn may occur. The cost of inspection and removal of asbestos and other harmful materials such as mercury thermostats, refrigerants, tires and other prohibited items generally falls upon the property owner.

Following the burn, DNR recommends disposing of cold ash and debris in a state-licensed solid waste facility.

Failure to conduct an asbestos pre-inspection or notify DNR 10 business days prior to these burns may result in citations.

"We're working very proactively to spread the word about asbestos regulations, as education is a much preferred approach to fines and penalties," said Davis.

While fines may seem high, they do not compare to the long term costs of releasing asbestos into our air. Asbestos is so strictly regulated because it is a confirmed carcinogen (causes cancer) and exposure to asbestos fibers can result in serious health issues.

Most forms of asbestos remain solid and fibrous at higher temperatures than the flames of a training fire, leaving the asbestos to be released into the air and distributed with the ash remaining from the fire.

"Once asbestos is released into the air during illegal structure burns, it has a chance to unknowingly expose those that are downwind from these sites," said Davis.

Most structures can contain an array of building materials (over 3,000) that are known to have asbestos used in their manufacture that pose environmental or health problems if burned or otherwise disposed of or removed improperly.

To dispose of asbestos containing materials, officials recommend contacting a contractor specializing in hazardous material removal, then contact the DNR to learn about safe locations for asbestos disposal.

More information is available by searching the DNR website dnr.wi.gov for keyword "asbestos," including a "Planning Your Demolition or Renovation Project - A Guide to Hazard Evaluation, Recycling and Waste Disposal [PDF]." and "Training Burns: A guide in the Process of Fire Training".

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT: Mark Davis at 608-266-3658.

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Public has opportunity to comment on management of Stewardship Demonstration Forests

RHINELANDER, Wis. -- The public has an opportunity to submit comments on the proposed management plans for eight unique state properties that the Department of Natural Resources uses to demonstrate sustainable forest management and responsible stewardship to students, professional foresters and non-industrial private forest landowners.

Originally named "Timber Harvest Demonstration Forests," these areas were established in the 1940s to demonstrate growing timber and woodlot management to farmers, according to Bob Dall, a DNR state forest planner at Rhinelander.

"Over the years, the emphasis changed to include total ecosystem management and education. In 1990, the tracts were renamed 'Stewardship Demonstration Forests' to reflect their use to educate the general public about managing land for multiple benefits," Dall said

DNR staff are now assessing eight of these public properties to develop revised management plans and is seeking public input and suggestions in developing the draft plans. The eight Stewardship Demonstration Forests include:

"These forests provide an opportunity to demonstrate active timber management and sustainable forestry," Dall said. "Most of the tracts have good historical information that may be useful in research, and the lands are open for potential new research opportunities."

There are currently 12 Stewardship Demonstration Forests, each in a different Wisconsin county. The forests cover a total 1,056 acres and range in size from 32 to 437 acres. Management of the other four Stewardship Demonstration Projects is incorporated into existing master plans for other state or county forest properties.

People can learn more about Stewardship Demonstration Forests, including their history and management, by searching the DNR website dnr.wi.gov for keywords "master planning," and clicking on the link for "demonstration forests."

The public review period opens May 20 and runs through June 9, 2014. The public can comment through an online survey available on the DNR website or download a public comment form. Comment forms, written comments or questions can be sent to Bob Dall, Wisconsin DNR, 107 Sutliff Avenue, Rhinelander, Wisconsin 54501 or by email to Robert.Dall@wisconsin.gov.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Bob Dall, 715-365-8993

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Forestry hires bring industry experience, conservation expertise to DNR

MADISON -- Four new hires in the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources forestry division bring extensive industry and environmental management experience to their new roles in providing support to Wisconsin's forest products industry.

The forest products services program provides assistance to Wisconsin's wood products industry while promoting sustainable forestry practices and balancing the needs of multiple forest stakeholders. The forest products services team maintains an online wood-use database for industry, provides education and outreach support, supplies forest inventory data and supports forest products research.

Steve Hubbard, forest products services team leader, says the new hires reflect the agency's long-term commitment to sustainable management practices. Wisconsin's forests now total more than 17 million acres and each year produce more wood than is harvested.

"The skills and experiences of these new team members help position our state for continued leadership in the forest products industry," Hubbard says. "We anticipate their work will produce exciting opportunities for collaboration that benefit citizens and strengthen the state's economy."

New team members include:

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Steve Hubbard, 608-231-9329, steven.hubbard@wisconsin.gov; Jennifer Sereno, communications, 608-770-8084.

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Read more: Previous Weekly News

Last Revised: Tuesday, May 20, 2014




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