UA experts to hold forestry seminar

A feller buncher operated by logging company LD Long Inc. cuts pines in a forest near Monticello in this September 2015 file photo. Forestry and forest management are among the most important businesses in southern Arkansas. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette file photo)
A feller buncher operated by logging company LD Long Inc. cuts pines in a forest near Monticello in this September 2015 file photo. Forestry and forest management are among the most important businesses in southern Arkansas. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette file photo)


With more than half of Arkansas covered in forests, a lot depends on how well those woodlands are managed. Air and water quality, wildlife habitat and jobs that sustain the state's economy are all directly affected, according to a news release.

Specialists with the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture will host a workshop June 27 to provide the state's forest landowners, forestry professionals and watershed resource managers with updated research on forestry management.

The workshop is set for 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at DeGray Lake Lodge and Jack Mountain wildlife management area, 20-27 State Park Entrance Road in Bismarck. The workshop is free, and people can register at https://uaex.uada.edu/forestry.

"Attendees will see active pine forest management operations from establishment to thinning to final harvest," said Kyle Cunningham, associate professor of forestry with the Division of Agriculture.

"We will visit an active wildlife management area at the Jack Mountain wildlife management area demonstrating vegetation management for wildlife. After lunch, attendees will learn about where their water comes from and potential threats to water quality. We will also include additional pine forest management information for achieving specific management goals," Cunningham said.

Private landowners, including farmers, ranchers and other individuals, own 69% of the timberland in the state. Many actively manage their woodlands. National forests account for 1% of the state's forested acreage, while forest resource companies own or lease 12%.

Agencies and speakers include:

University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture -- Kyle Cunningham, associate professor of forestry, and John Pennington, water quality educator.

Arkansas Department of Agriculture Forestry Division -- Michael Miller.

Ross Foundation -- Mark Karnes, director of operations, and Eric Rhodes, forester.

Arkansas Game and Fish Commission -- Kevin Wood.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Ouachita Office -- Shannon Herrin, project forester.

SCHEDULE

8 a.m. -- Meet in DeGray Lake Lodge parking lot.

8:30 a.m. -- Depart for Jack Mountain WMA for tours.

11:45 a.m. -- Return to DeGray Lodge for lunch.

12:45 p.m. -- Forest management for health and productivity (indoors.)

Water sources and threats in the DeGray area.

Forestry best management practices.

Getting the most from your pine forest: invasive species, carbon programs and more.

This workshop is part of the Productive Forests Protecting Water series, sponsored by the division's Arkansas Forest Resource Center and the Ross Foundation in collaboration with the Arkansas Department of Agriculture, the Arkansas Forestry Association and the Natural Resources Conservation Service.

To find forestry resources, visit https://uaex.uada.edu/forestry. To learn about extension programs in Arkansas, contact a local Cooperative Extension Service agent or visit www.uaex.uada.edu. Follow the agency on Twitter and Instagram at @AR_Extension.

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs to all eligible people without discrimination.


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