Hiawatha National Forest seeks public input for the Grand Island Habitat Restoration Project

Photo courtesy: U.S. Department of Agriculture; The iconic Forest Service welcome sign invites...
Photo courtesy: U.S. Department of Agriculture; The iconic Forest Service welcome sign invites visitors to come explore and have loads of fun in a beautiful, rustic maritime setting at Grand Island National Recreation Area in Michigan. USDA photo by Robert Nichols. Via Flickr.(WLUC)
Published: Aug. 1, 2022 at 2:17 PM EDT
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MUNISING, Mich. (WLUC) - The Munising Ranger District of the Hiawatha National Forest is seeking public comment on the Grand Island Habitat Restoration Project, located on the Grand Island National Recreation Area, approximately 2 miles NNW of Munising.

The Forest Service will be accepting written comments on this action until Aug. 5, 2022.

The intent of the project is to restore and support the native ecosystems by introducing prescribed fire and fuel management into the area. Treating the project area will help control the growth of woody-stemmed plants, stimulate native flora, reduce hazardous fuels, and improve wildlife habitat. The Tombolo area has become overgrown with numerous species, which are preventing natural regeneration of native plant communities. The maintenance of the historic Farm Field requires a disturbance agent, such as fire, to support the reintroduced native plant communities.

The Grand Island Habitat Restoration Project proposes to treat approximately 310 acres with methods including prescribed burning, mowing, mechanical thinning with chainsaws and brush saws, and felling snags. These proposed activities would occur in the historic Farm Field (approximately 2 acres) and the Tombolo area (between Murray and Trout Bays).

Forest Service staff have been working closely with Island residents and partners over the past two years to answer questions and take measures to mitigate concerns. Now, the Hiawatha National Forest is seeking comments from the public to ensure that recreation users of Grand Island National Recreation Area have the same opportunity.

Interested parties can submit comments via email by Aug. 5, 2022, to Nicholas Mouthaan at nicholas.mouthaan@usda.gov, or Becky Cain at rebecca.cain@usda.gov. Comments must include a full name, address, and phone number to receive further communication.

More information about this project can be found at https://www.fs.usda.gov/sopa/forest-level.php?110910.

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