2012-09-13 / Outdoors

DNR seeking plan input

Alger and Marquette forests to be affected

LANSING – The Department of Natural Resources will host an open house on Oct. 2, in Eben Junction to provide information and receive public comment on proposed forest management treatments for 2014 in the Gwinn management unit, which includes Alger and Marquette counties. The open house is set for the following time and location: Oct. 2, 4 to 7 p.m. at the Superior Central High School, E2865 M-94, Eben Junction (will cover proposed forest treatments in Alger and Marquette counties).

Each year, DNR personnel evaluate one-tenth of the state forest. The inventory provides key decision-making information for foresters and wildlife, fisheries and other resource managers. The age, health, quality and quantity of trees and other vegetation are assessed to enable DNR staff to make informed decisions. Timber management, wildlife and fisheries habitat, minerals, archeological sites, recreational use, wildfire potential and social concerns are just some of the topics taken into consideration during this review.

Because the forest is inventoried approximately two years in advance, a year of entry is assigned to indicate when treatments will be prepared. Information currently under review has a 2014 year of entry. This means that treatment activities on lands being reviewed this year will actually begin in 2014.

Proposed treatments, which may include timber harvesting, replanting and other management activities, are designed to ensure the sustainability of all forest resources.

A specific proposal this year in Mathias Township in Alger County involves the closure of a fire-damaged bridge over the east branch of the Whitefish River. The proposal suggests closing the bridge to full-sized vehicles, but keeping it open for off-road vehicles.

On Oct. 23, the DNR will complete its formal compartment reviews to decide on final treatment plans for these areas. Those reviews will take place: Oct. 23, 9:30 a.m. at the Peter White Public Library in Marquette.

Persons with disabilities who need accommodations for either meeting should contact Jim Ferris at (906) 346-9201 a minimum of five business days before each meeting.

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