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Title: Subdivide or silviculture: choices facing family forest owners in the redwood region

Author: Stewart, William; Ferranto, Shasta; Nakamura, Gary; Getz, Christy; Huntsinger, Lynn; Kelly, Maggi.;

Date: 2012

Source: In: Standiford, Richard B.; Weller, Theodore J.; Piirto, Douglas D.; Stuart, John D., tech. coords. Proceedings of coast redwood forests in a changing California: A symposium for scientists and managers. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-238. Albany, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. pp. 617-626.

Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)

   Note: This article is part of a larger document. View the larger document

Description: Families or family businesses own nearly all of the private redwood forestland in California. Family forest owners have practiced both subdivision and silviculture for decades but the dominant theme for most family owners is environmental stewardship. Parcel size is more important than expressed values as a predictor of resource management activities. All landowners with more than 50 acres undertook high levels of resource stewardship regarding controlling invasive species, protecting water quality, improving fish and wildlife habitats, and removing individual trees to promote forest health. Timber harvesting was undertaken by 80 percent of the ownerships with 500 acres or more, but became progressively less common for smaller ownerships. Sustainable timber production is the most significant legal revenuegenerating alternative to real estate for forest properties. Unlike most other resource management activities that are discretionary, timber harvesting in California can require permission from up to five state agencies and three federal agencies. High transaction costs limit involvement to forest owners with both large land holdings and strong skills in business management. It is not inconceivable that California's forest ownership pattern could become more like Washington State over time where small rather than large holdings represent the majority of family forestland.

Keywords: family forests, land use change, sustainable forestry, timber harvesting

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Stewart, William; Ferranto, Shasta; Nakamura, Gary; Getz, Christy; Huntsinger, Lynn; Kelly, Maggi. 2012. Subdivide or silviculture: choices facing family forest owners in the redwood region. In: Standiford, Richard B.; Weller, Theodore J.; Piirto, Douglas D.; Stuart, John D., tech. coords. Proceedings of coast redwood forests in a changing California: A symposium for scientists and managers. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-238. Albany, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. pp. 617-626.

 


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