County Ag Report: Harvesting Trees

While snow may now blanket Aroostook County, if you're looking for a new source of income, it might be right around you.

(Harrison) Northern Maine is full of forests, it's a good source of income for a lot of people here in Maine, loggers and landowners alike.

Forester Harrison Kilpatrick says winter is actually a good time to remove trees from land, and that harvesting doesn't mean removing every tree.

(Harrison) When you harvest your forecast, you want to have trees left over. Otherwise, it's considered a clear cut. Maine State Law only allows you a clear cut of up to 20 acres before you need special permission from the state. A lot of problems landowners run into is they wait too long before they harvest their wood, then they end up with a clear cut conditions.

Kilpatrick says that trees taken are older, sometimes up to 80 years old, so that the harvest mimics what happens in nature, and makes use of the wood.

(Harrison) The idea when you're harvesting a forest is to have it on a cycle. If you do it right you can have your forest harvested every 15 to 30 years. If you wait too long, the recovery time is longer.

With such a long turnaround, doing research on potential loggers and pricing for wood is the first step.

(Harrison) Once you've figured that out, you need to start asking questions, like what measures are you going to take to make sure you follow the laws? What prices are you going to give me for your wood? What else will I get out of it?

10 acres of land is usually the minimum required to send in a logger, and Kilpatrick says the added value of having culverts, roads, and a boundary survey completed and paid for as part of the harvest will increase the value of the lot in the future. Anthony Macari, NewsSource 8.