Project improves private land forest health in the Great Open Spaces

The focal landscape for this project are the Black Hills-Pine Ridge areas.

A cooperative forester position was developed in 2013 to work with partners in Wyoming’s Black Hills to improve forest health on private lands. In three-plus years, this forester is helping private landowners reduce overstocked stands of ponderosa pine and has worked to create healthy, uneven-aged forest stands. Along the way, wildlife habitat quality, quantity and diversity are improving.

The forester is using forest management programs to accomplish goals, including the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, Forest Stewardship Program, American Tree Farm System and Wyoming State Bark Beetle grant funds. The programs are impacting wildlife in a positive way, including wild turkeys, elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer and many species of birds and small mammals.

Partners in this project include the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the Wyoming State Forestry Division and the Weston County Natural Resource District.

Article Category