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Contact information
For information on the Wisconsin Urban Forest Assessment Program:
Brian Anderson
Forest inventory analyst

Dan Buckler
Urban forest assessment specialist

Urban Forestry Assessment (WisUFA) ProgramUrban Forest Inventory and Analysis (UFIA)

The Urban Forest Inventory and Analysis (UFIA) program in Wisconsin is a partnership between the U.S. Forest Service and the Wisconsin DNR to inventory trees in urban settings. The collected data provides key insights into the composition, health and trends of the state's urban forests.

Seventy-five field plots were established in 2015 in the Madison and Milwaukee metro areas, marking the formal beginning of the UFIA program in the state. The program was then expanded in 2016 to sample urban forests throughout Wisconsin. Over seven years, around 1,300 field plots will be established in census-defined urban areas of the state. Each of the sites will then be revisited every seven years, enabling the assessment of changes over time.

National effort

Since 1930, the U.S. Forest Service has been surveying, analyzing and reporting on the health and productivity of America's forests, including those in Wisconsin. Known as the Forest Inventory and Analysis [exit DNR], this Forest Service program works in partnership with the nation's state forestry agencies, universities and non-governmental organizations to serve as the nation's and the state's forest census.

Urban forests were not covered by a similar inventory and monitoring system like rural forests, despite the benefits of the urban forest and the need to know more about them. An initiative in the federal 2014 Farm Bill called for an expansion of the FIA program to include sampling of the nation's urban forests. With experience gained from past urban pilot studies, FIA has teamed up with i-Tree [exit DNR] to implement an annualized inventory of trees in urban settings.

The U.S. Forest Service is initially focusing national efforts on metropolitan areas with populations greater than 200,000. In 2014 the first UFIA plots were established and measured in Baltimore, MD and Austin, TX. There are now more than 35 cities where UFIA is pursued, with some states (like Wisconsin) collecting data across all urban areas, not just their major cities.

Last revised: Monday May 06 2019