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Re: E-M:/ Conservation leaders form political action committee

Enviro-Mich message from Roger Kuhlman <rokuhlman@yahoo.com>

Clearcutting is not problematic for a Jackpine
ecosystem? Well how is it accomplished? With heavy
equipment and the building of many unnecesary roads, I
would guess . These don't do ecological damage in
terms of regularization of habitat structure and
simplification of the ecosystem? That does not seem
very believable. I also doubt very much that
clearcutting does not facilitate the spread of
non-native invasive plants into the area where it is
performed. The timber industry in the West is one of
the top spreaders of non-native plants into western
forest habitats.

Putting aside the question whether clearcut Jackpine
forest ecosystems are a heavily altered ecosystem or
not, clearcutting is not a sustainable process of
perpetuating the system since it does not pay for
itself as you admit. Funding for the clearcutting
could dry up if the political situation changes. That
makes the whole situation artificial and subjects the
Kirtland Warbler and other rare plants and animals to
a high risk of extinction over the long run. That is
not good ecological planning.

Roger Kuhlman
Ann Arbor, Michigan

I don't support the various state and national
subsidies that allow upper middle class and upper
class people to build second and third vacation homes
in the Jackpine forest. How about focussing on these
anti-environmental policies?

--- JBull51264@aol.com wrote:

> This is a response from Jim Bull to a message from
> rokuhlman@yahoo.com (Roger 
> Kuhlman) dated 4/30/06 5:21:17 PM.   I have copied
> his message and responded 
> after paragraphs for sections to make it easier for
> others to see what exactly 
> in his message I am responding to:
> << Maybe you will tell how 190,000 acres of forest
> are
> artificially clearcut. I am bet the process is very
> ecologically destructive and encourages a lot of
> non-native plant growth into areas where it is
> undertaken.
> What is the principle reason for doing this? Follow
> the money and we will know what is really going on
> with forest management. Its goal is not ecosystem
> health.>>
> Did you read anything I wrote?  It is hard to know
> where to start. No 
> clearcutting is not destructive to the jackpine
> ecosystem and no, it does not 
> encourage non-native plant growth--in fact, as I
> wrote before, it is the only way 
> several threatened and endangered wildflowers and
> other plants survive and thrive 
> in the Jackpine ecosytem.
> What is the principle reason for doing this?  Again,
> you didn't read or if 
> you did, you didn't absorb or understand what I
> wrote.  The principle reason for 
> this is to perpetuate habitat for the Kirtland's
> Warbler and to perpetuate 
> the Jackpine ecosystem.  You sound like you are
> madly in search of some evil 
> here.  This is not by any stretch of the imagination
> driven by the timber 
> industry.  It is driven by the Endangered Species
> Act and the Kirtland's Warbler 
> Recovery Team which is in charge of the effort to
> recover the Kirtland's Warbler.  
> Harvesting Jackpine thankfully does provide some
> income for the US Forest 
> Service and the Michigan DNR that helps offset the
> cost of Kirtland's Warbler 
> Management--it only covers a portion of the cost,
> but in these days of dwindling 
> wildlife budgets it is becoming more critical.   
> If the timber industry were driving what happened to
> those 190,000 acres, 
> believe me they would not be planting or managing
> for Jackpine.  Red Pine is by 
> far the preferred tree for timber in these areas. 
> However, it has almost no 
> value for wildlife and only rarely have Kirtland's
> Warlbers nested in Red Pine.  
> And very few of the native wildlflowers, shrubs,
> grasses and sedges that are 
> characteristic of Jackpine ecosystems grow in Red
> Pine plantations.  And with 
> Red Pine they are almost always plantations (in
> rows).  
> <<Isn't it true that the huge fires of the late
> 1800's
> were the product of poor timber cutting practices.
> From what I have heard Michigan was just devestated
> by
> the timber industry for profit during this time.
> Fire
> was not a continual raging problem in the area
> before
> there was massive clearcutting in the northern
> forests.>>
> Yes, they were the result of poor timber cutting
> practices.  They are not 
> remotely simliar to what is done today.  My point is
> that the jackpine ecosystem 
> was perpetuated by as much or more by fires caused
> by humans as by so-called 
> natural fires.  If you are arguing for bringing back
> the natural fires that 
> created the jackpine ecosystem, I was pointing out
> that the fires that did the 
> most to create the jackpine ecosystem were caused by
> man, and arguably those 
> poor timber practices.  Of course there were
> lightning fires, but also Native 
> American set fires.  Fires were not a problem before
> the large-scale timbering 
> because the population of Native Americans was so
> small.  You might desire to go 
> back to that time, but it is totally unrealistic.  
> <<I would question anything about how our forests
> should
> be managed today that comes from timber industry
> sources. They see forests as trees that are
> harvestable dollars and basically nothing else.>>
> Again you are making a totally wrong assumption. 
> You might want to find out 
> the facts before you jump to conclusions.  I got
> none of the information or 
> comments I shared from the timber industry.  I don't
> know anybody in the timber 
> industry.  I have been working on the Kirtland's
> Warbler, as a student 
> researcher, then a Forest Service naturalist leading
> Kirtland's Warlber tours and for 
> the last 25 years as a passionate volunteer on the
> Kirtland' Warbler census 
> and helping the Recovery Team in various ways
> including as an advocate for 
> adequate funding and supportive policies.  My father
> worked for the then 
> Conservation Department (which was renamed DNR) as a
>  Conservation Education Consultant 
> out of the Roscommon office.   He helped organize
> the first Kirtland's 
> Warbler Census in 1951 and was known around the
> country as one of THE people to 
> contact if you wanted somebody to guide you to see a
> Kirtland's Warbler.  He took 
> me up north to see the Kirtland's many times and for
> important events like the 
> dedication of the first US Forest Service Kirtland's
> Warbler management area 
> in 1964 (Roger Tory Peterson came to help dedicate
> it).   All of this to say, 
> that I have a long history with the Kirtland's
> Warbler and Kirtland's Warbler 
> management, and thus draw on those years of
> experience and on what I have 
> learned from researchers over the years.
> Since the timber industry is NOT involved in these
> decisions, if  you mean to 
> lump the dedicated biologists and silvicuturalists
> who work on Kirtland's 
> Warbler management within agencies like the US
> Forest Service, the Michigan DNR, 
> and the US Fish and Wildlife Service into your
> statement about folks "looking 
> at trees and seeing only harvestable dollars," you
> are way off base.  These 
> folks are passionately dedicated to Kirtland's
> Warbler recovery and to 
> perpetuating the Jackpine Ecosystem.   
> <<To say we know a lot about how Jackpine forests
> ecosystems work in natural settings sounds to me
> like
> a wee bit of human arrogance in pursuit of material
> profit. If Jackpine forests were fire-designed and
> fire-adapted, there is no way they can not be very
> different from forests that are now longer allowed
> to
> burn in random patterns and are instead clearcut.
> Just
> because Jackpines are still there and some of the
> other wildlife is still there does not mean that the
> ecosystem has not been severely altered. In fact the
> claim that they are basically the same flies in the
=== message truncated ===

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