Forest and woodland management

Large, fallen trees in various stages of decay contribute much-needed diversity to terrestrial and aquatic habitats in western forests. When most biological activity in soil is limited by low moisture availability in summer, the fallen tree-soil interface offers a relatively cool, moist habitat for animals and a substrate for microbial and root activity. Intensified utilization and management can deprive future forests of large, fallen trees. The impact of this loss on habitat diversity and on long-term forest productivity must be determined because managers need sound information on which to base resource management decisions.
Future forests will contain much less coarse woody debris (CWD), and that debris will be smaller and of different quality than that seen today. We have the technology to remove most coarse woody debris from the forest; in fact, current wood utilization standards encourage such removal (fig. 2.1). Moreover, converting natural forests to intensively manipulated stands reduces tree lifespans from centuries to decades; future trees will be much smaller than they are today, and wood quality will undoubtedly be different from that of today's forests.
For much more: http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/L/logging.html
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Sincerely,
John A. Keslick, Jr.
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Central TX here. 1.5 acres of 5 cleared for house, detached garage, septic system, and firebreak. Native trees in area are juniper ashe ("mountain cedar"), live oak, red oak, with a sprinkling of pecan and chinaberry. I found a juniper ashe that was cut about 5' height. No bark left on it, about 18" thick at base, unusually large for this tree. Its been dead for quite some time. There's other juniper ashe shading it with undergrowth around it. Rabbits have a hole adjacent to the trunk's base. Its relatively cool and moist in the area around the dead trunk during the long TX summer.
If you're somewhat curious, research photographs of central TX hill country before 1900. You will find it barren of trees, except along rivers and creeks. The juniper ashe has changed that, and allowed other trees to populate the region natively. Yet, most homeowners cut all the juniper ashe down, leaving sparse stands of live oaks on their property. Tracts usually are 5-20 acres. Reasons vary from fire hazard (true), ugly appearance, shades the live oak to death, steals water runoff.
Juniper ashe is highly tolerant of pruning. I've seen no problem with cutting all branches to 6' in height on 12' tree. Only do this within wooded area around the house to allow sight within the area. Allows more sunlight to the live oaks as well. Thinning the juniper ashe from time to time is also needed. This allows more water runoff to feed the water table, this local wells and seasonal creeks. But, at the same time, allows the juniper ashe to continue its work of breaking up the limestone for eventual soil creation. The remaining land, I've left nature to do its bidding. I urge all that live within the central TX hill country to do similar.
Dave
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"Dioclese" <NONE> wrote in message

Maybe you should check out what these guys did regarding junipers and what the results are.
http://www.bambergerranch.org/about/history.phtml
"For the past 36 years the 5,500 acre ranch has become one of the largest habitat restoration projects in the state, winning numerous awards
With the removal of Ashe juniper and the replanting of native grasses, long absent springs are now constantly flowing.
Most importantly, prior to habitat restoration, there was no surface water or live creeks on the ranch. However, once he began removing woody species and replacing them with native grasses, springs and seeps began to appear. Now we have 27 stock tanks (or ponds and lakes) and countless springs.
Selah, Bamberger Ranch Preserve http://www.austinchronicle.com/gyrobase/Issue/column?oid=oid:83251
Bamberger Ranch looks like paradise in God's country. The rugged landscape is lush with tall grass, and the shaded valleys are filled with crystal-clear streams. This stretch of the Hill Country about five miles south of Johnson City wasn't always a shining example of land management.
When J. David Bamberger first visited the plot some 35 years ago, the 3,000 acres were a dry moonscape covered with junipers (cedars). At the beginning of a Sunday morning tour of the ranch, Bamberger said he was looking for the least desirable piece of land he could find because it was cheap, and he wanted the challenge of bringing it back after years of neglect.
Bamberger purchased his first ranch near Bulverde in 1959. Inspired by Pleasant Valley, a book written by Louis Bromfield and given to him by his mother, Hester, Bamberger set out to put Bromfield's ideas of habitat restoration to work.
The remarkable change to the property under Bamberger's stewardship is most evident at the fence line. On one side the junipers choke out the other plants. On Bamberger's side of the fence grass is the predominant vegetation, but the hills are covered with a diversity of plants.
"When we first came here," Bamberger says, "we drilled seven wells to 500 feet and didn't get a drop of water. The first years we saw only 48 species of birds, now we've counted over 155. The best deer harvested field-dressed at 55 pounds, now the average is 105 pounds."
Clearing the juniper was the first step of restoring the ranch that has grown to 5,500 acres. .
On the tour of the ranch, Dr. Lew Hunnicutt, a former professor of agriculture at Southwest Texas State University working at the ranch as the resident "grass Aggie," explains that the gnarly juniper trees can suck 16 to 20 gallons of water out of the ground a day. On top of that, the leaves and limbs are very efficient in directing rainfall to its roots, starving other
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--
Dave
Profound is we're here due to a chance arrangement
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"Dioclese" <NONE> wrote in message

You propose more points than I am able or willing to address. Texas does have a juniper eradication program which does seem to support the view of the Bamberger Ranch folks rather than yours regarding the the issue of juniper, so I'll leave it at that.
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"Dioclese" <NONE> wrote in message

Great. Just one point. There is a difference between having lots of trees and having lots of high quality trees.
Yet, most homeowners cut all the juniper ashe

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