Harvest for habitat, harvest for forest health: Over 70 landowners and service providers meet in the East Iron Range

On September 30, 2016 over 70 woodland owners and service providers met in Iron Junction, MN to discuss opportunities for managing private woodlands. At this Forestry Field Day, woodland owners and service providers discussed options available promote wildlife habitat and forest health.

Roger Nelson of the MN DNR discusses the challenges in marketing balsam fir and the fire risks the species presents.
Roger Nelson of the MN DNR discusses the challenges in marketing balsam fir and the fire risk the species presents.

The day began in the morning with an open house with presentations by service providers. These presentations included information on cost-share assistance programs, consulting services available to woodland owners, representatives from forest products industries, and educational opportunities. Landowners also met individually with service providers to answer questions on practical approaches to increase habitat for wildlife and improve the health of their woodlands.

After lunch, woodland owners visited six fields stops that showcased forest management for wildlife and forest health. Stops focused on the habitat requirements of wildlife such as sharp-tailed grouse and golden winged warbler. In promoting forest health, stops included a site where red pine thinning recently occurred, timber salvage harvesting, and harvesting spruce tops.

CLICK HERE to view a sample of photos from the event. Interested in learning more about how service providers can help you in managing your woods? Watch our recent webinar from September 2016 by John Carlson of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, or take a look at this post for a list of service providers for Minnesota’s woodland owners.


Matt works on issues related to forest ecosystem health. He's based in St. Paul.

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  1. Unfortunately, I was not able to attend the event in Iron Junction. My husband and I own about 100 acres of land in SE MN and are working to improve the many acres of wooded land. I am wondering if you could direct me to information on any cost share assistance programs. Some of the problems we are dealing with are buckthorn, emerald ash borer, and wild mustard.

    Many thanks in advance

    1. Thanks Amy. The webinar that John Carlson of the MNDNR gave that is mentioned in the post is a great source of info. You can also look at the slides that he used by clicking here. It includes a number of links to cost-share programs, sources of assistance, and people to contact. It’s current and up-to-date with all of the info it sounds like you’re interested in.