Inventory provides better understanding of state forests
The Department of Natural Resources has released a new tree inventory designed to better inform Indiana residents how state forests are used.
Some highlights from the DNR Division of Forestry’s Continuous Forestry Inventory report include:
The inventory is based on a sample of 3,860 plots located randomly across approximately 156,000 acres of state forest lands, with a sampling rate of approximately one plot for every 40 acres.
The full report is in the “State Forest Management” section at dnr.IN.gov/forestry/3631.htm.
The inventory reports tree measurements on live and dead trees, including identification of species, diameter, height, damage and tree quality.
It also assesses regeneration in state forests, and includes estimates of growth, mortality, removals and general stand characteristics.
This information will be used as baseline data to compare to future inventory studies.
Indiana state forests provide both foreign and domestic markets with the finest quality hardwood in the world. Since 1966, the Division of Forestry has harvested 200 million board feet of timber, generating $41 million to help support the division’s missions, including recreation and resource management. The current estimated value of standing timber on state forests is $400 million. Indiana’s forests also provide habitat for wildlife, clean air and water, and protect soil from erosion.
The forests have been recognized by both the Sustainable Forestry Initiative and Forest Stewardship Council as meeting rigorous national standards of well-managed forests.