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Forest Management Program


Go to the Forest Management Program’s Frequently Asked Questions

 

    * Regulations for the sale of forest products on Fort Drum.
    * Invasive Pest Alert: Emerald Ash Borer.
    * Invasive Pest Alert: Asian Longhorn Beetle.

 

Forest Management Program

(315) 772-6767

The primary purpose of the Fort Drum Forest Management Program is to manage the installation’s forested lands to support the Army training mission and to enhance ecosystem integrity through sound forest management practices. Additional objectives include the annual production of commercial forest products, enhancement of forested habitats to benefit wildlife, protection of watersheds, and increased opportunities for outdoor recreation. Forest management on Fort Drum is concerned with maintaining and enhancing the diversity of the forested ecosystem. This diversity allows the trainers access to different types of land formations and vegetative structures in order to provide optimal conditions for all training scenarios.

The Forest Management Program supports the military training mission by creating open maneuver areas and bivouac sites for the soldiers to train in. These areas are most often thinned based on tree spacing requirements in order to provide overhead concealment while still maintaining high levels maneuverability. In contrast, the management strategies of other forested stands are focused on the silvicultural needs of the ecosystem. This is more prominent in the north and northeastern sections of the installation where terrain limits certain types of training activities. These areas are managed through uneven aged silviculture to provide continual growth and harvest of timber products, as well as multi level forest canopies to benefit various wildlife species.

Whether for training or silviculture, the Forestry Program can sustainably harvest up 1600 acres per year of the approx 74,000 acres of forested land on this installation.

Protecting essential wildlife habitat is also a major concern of the Forest Management Program. Habitat loss and species decline has prompted many federal regulations and guidelines that help maintain and protect essential wildlife habitat. These guidelines help not only to limit the disturbance caused by harvesting actions, but also enhance habitats. Watershed guidelines and regulations are also taken into consideration whenever a harvesting action is proposed. This is done to protect and enhance Fort Drum’s vast network of wetlands and water bodies. The Forest Management Program follows New York State Best Management Practices (BMP’s) for harvesting timber.

The Forestry Program also reaches out to the local community by offering educational opportunities through the various public outreach events. Most recently we started promoting Fort Drum Maple Days, in which we try to increase the awareness of sugar bush management and maple syrup production. There is an annual Arbor Day tree planting each spring aimed at educating the Fort Drum community, particularly children, on how important trees are to our communities. In addition, there are opportunities for college classes to visit the installation. These tours are focused on providing a better understanding of the complexities of forest management on an active military installation.

The firewood program helps our soldiers and their families as well as the local communities by giving them the opportunity to harvest firewood at a low cost of $10.00 per full cord. This also benefits the training mission by cleaning up the debris in the training areas as well as the cantonment area. Refer to the “frequently asked questions” section for specifics on this program.

 



 

Forest Management

Frequently Asked Questions

The following list contains answers to questions that the Forest Management Program has received. You may click on any of the questions listed below to find the answer. If you do not find an answer to your question please call the Forest Management Program at (315) 772-6767.

    * What is the Firewood Program?
    * What does the Firewood Program accomplish?
    * What is the procedure for acquiring a permit to cut firewood at Fort Drum?
    * How much does a Firewood Permit cost?
    * What information is required when I purchase a permit?
    * How long does a permit last?
    * How do I know where to cut firewood?
    * Can I hunt while I cut firewood?
    * Can I just call the sportsman's hotline to sign out for firewood cutting?
    * Do I need a range pass or a recreation pass for access to the training areas?
    * Can I cut firewood in the Cantonment Area?
    * Can I cut a Christmas tree on Fort Drum?
    * How can I purchase and/or harvest timber on Fort Drum?
    * How much timber is harvested annually on Fort Drum?
    * What is done with the money received from firewood permits and timber sales?
    * How can I contact someone in the Forest Management Program?


Q: What is the Firewood Program?

A: The firewood program at Fort Drum is a self-service program designed to help local townspeople acquire low-cost firewood. It consists of gathering and removing firewood from predetermined areas assigned by Fort Drum's Forest Management Program.

All wood that is available for firewood is dead and down.

These firewood areas are generally found within the training areas, but there are some small acreage allotments within the boundaries of the Cantonment Area. To gain access to the firewood areas, a permit must be purchased at the Natural Resources Office (Bldg. T-4848) prior to the removal of firewood. The cost of the permit depends on the amount of wood harvested from the area. The current rate is $10.00 per full cord.

Nearly all of the firewood areas are easily accessible from towns surrounding the installation. However, there may be military training scheduled that will prevent access for activities in that area. The Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security (DPTMSEC) Range Branch coordinates all military and civilian operations in the training areas. DPTMSEC Range Control specifically has a schedule of events and manages those events so that military training and other activities can occur simultaneously, if possible. For this reason, the permit holder must check-in and check-out with Range Control daily at (315) 772-7152 or at Bldg. P-4855. If you have questions, contact the Forest Management Program at 772-6767.

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Q: What does the Firewood Program accomplish?

A: Areas are selected to help meet the forest management objectives of increased training maneuverability and improving the forest stand. A potential site for firewood removal is an area that has an abundance of trees afflicted with disease, insect infestation, or other natural or training damage. These damaged trees should be removed to improve the quality of the stand as a whole.

The forest management objectives are the major benefits resulting from the implementation of the firewood program. The permit holder essentially removes the inferior trees from the stand, thus improving the stand’s quality. With the excess material gone from the area, training operations are facilitated.

In addition to the forest management objectives, other accomplishments made by the firewood program are: increased areas suitable for wildlife habitat, increased growth of residual trees, and increased tree form quality of residuals. Cumulative results are such that there is a widespread improvement in the quality of Fort Drum’s forested areas.

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Q: What is the procedure for acquiring a permit to cut firewood at Fort Drum?

A: Prior to cutting wood, a permit must be purchased at the Natural Resources Office (Bldg. T-4848) during normal business hours. The permit holder must check-in and check-out with Range Control daily at (315) 772-7152.
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Q: How much does a Firewood Permit cost?

A: The cost of the permit depends on the amount of wood harvested from the area. The current rate is $10.00 per full cord.
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Q: What information is required when I purchase a permit?

A: Please have the following materials ready to purchase a permit.

   1. Names of any and all persons engaging in cutting firewood, as well as those accompanying wood cutters.
   2. Full address and phone number of permit holder.
   3. The license plate number, year, make, model and color of the haul vehicle being used. Only 1 haul vehicle may be used per permit.

Only cash will be accepted.
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Q: How long does a permit last?

A: The effective date begins on the day the permit is issued, and lasts for one week. There are no exceptions. If you fail to fill your permit there will be no refunds.
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Q: How do I know where to cut firewood?

A: Any place that has dead and down wood can be harvested. Maps of some designated areas are available at the Natural Resources Office (Bldg. T-4848). If you have questions, contact the Forest Management Program at 772-6767.
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Q: Can I hunt while I cut firewood?

A: No. Firewood cutting is not considered a recreational activity. No person shall possess a firearm, bow or other hunting implement while engaged in wood cutting practices.
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Q: Can I just call the sportsman's hotline to sign out for firewood cutting?

A: No. Calling the sportsman hotline does not sign you out for access to the training area. You must call and personally check-in and check-out with Range Control daily at (315) 772-7152.
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Q: Do I need a range pass or a recreation pass for access to the training areas?

A: No. Your firewood permit is your range pass. Your permit must be in plain view on the dashboard of the haul vehicle when firewood is being cut.
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Q: Can I cut firewood in Cantonment Area?

A: Yes. Firewood permits can be issued for the Cantonment Area. You are not required to check-in at Range Control when cutting firewood in the Cantonment Area.
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Q: Can I cut a Christmas tree on Fort Drum?

A: No. Only dead and down timber may be harvested with a firewood permit.
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Q: How can I purchase and/or harvest timber on Fort Drum?

A: To receive notice of up coming timber sales you must be on the bidders list. To be included on the bidders list contact the Forestry Program Manager at (315)-772-3170, or send your name, address, phone/fax number by mail to: Forestry Office, PW Environmental, 85 1st Street West, Fort Drum, NY 13602.
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Q: How much timber is harvested annually on Fort Drum?

A: Normally, up to 1,600 acres of the approximately 74,000 forested acres on Fort Drum, may be harvested annually through thinnings, regeneration cuts, and land clearing.
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Q: What is done with the money received from firewood permits and timber sales?

A: All money received from forest management activities goes back into the forest management program.
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Q: How can I contact someone in the Forest Management Program?

A: Call the Forestry Program Manager (315) 772-3170 or a Forester at (315) 772-6767.
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