Forest health workshop educates landowners, timber professionals on invasive species
Participants heard speakers talk about invasive species and what programs are available to them.
IRON MOUNTAIN, Mich. (WLUC) - 45 landowners and timber professionals gathered in Iron Mountain to learn about the health of our forests. Participants heard speakers talk about invasive species and what programs are available to them. The Wild Rivers Invasive Species Coalition (WRISC) hosted the workshop.
“They get together and hear from area experts and natural resource professionals in the field about current forest health issues, the current state of forest health, and different opportunities for landowners and timber professionals to do best management practices or gain different skills for their own properties,” said Lindsay Peterson, WRISC coordinator.
Peterson says some forest health issues discussed were the impacts of invasive species on our forest.
“Different things like invasive buckthorn, but also forest pests like the emerald ash borer and oak wilt, which are still really big issues in our area,” Peterson said. “We have been hearing a lot about that, especially from the Michigan DNR forest health update.”
The emerald ash borer is a beetle that feeds on ash trees. It is native to Asia. Oak wilt is a fungal disease native to the midwestern United States. Peterson said it is important to discuss and educate professionals about ongoing issues.
“I think that the high turnout today means that people care about these issues and are interested in what they can do to create a healthy forest for generations to come on their properties,” Peterson said.
The last major workshop was in 2018, Peterson said the turnout for the workshop was extremely strong and she said the best way to keep a healthy forest is to stay educated.
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