Conservation and Preservation are two different things. Some of us want to conserve our Natural Resources while others want to Preserve them.
Preservation is not forever, just in our relatively short lifetimes. Many Tree Hugger groups fight any tree harvesting or thinning. When they do this, they are helping to create a public health hazard. Fire is unhealthy to human dwellings, wildlife, and other healthy uses.
Honestly, we all love our forests. The interests of folks fighting forest management is the same as those promoting healthy forests. We need to get on the same page and work together.
A healthy forest grows way faster and thicker than an unmanaged forest. What may take 80 years to mature, without care, can mature in 60 years with proper forestry management.
Forestry is a Science that has been around for over a century. If we believe the Science, we can have our forests and wildlife too. Forests can also be managed to help control forest fires. Removing fuels and dead trees means less to burn. Creating fire clear cuts will help block or stop the spread of fires.
Wildlife does best in areas with edges. Mature, dense forests offer little food or cover for most wildlife. A forest project near Bozeman was recently blocked because it would “impact Lynx habitat.” The primary food of lynx is rabbits. Hares do not live in thick forests; they live in fields and along edges.
We all love trees but we also all hate forest fires. There needs to be some common ground and understanding. If a farmer grew a wonderful crop and let it go to waste, we would say how stupid. If we allow a forest to mature and go to waste…?
Let’s work together for a healthy forested Montana!
For more Montana Grant, find him planting trees at www.montanagrantfishing.com.