DEEP: Segment 3, 2009 Forestry Photos

Forestry Practices Field Workshop
October, 2009
The 2009 Segment 3 “forestry” themed program was held in both Norfolk and Colchester.  The classroom portion shown in this photo was hosted by the Town of Colchester.  Darcy Winther from the DEEP Wetlands Management Section addressed Municipal Inland Wetlands Agency Commissioners and Agents on the relationship of the Inland Wetlands and Watercourses Act (IWWA) to agricultural and forestry practices.   
This field workshop was located at Salmon River State Forest.  Participants braved the rain to observe forestry practices, equipment, and BMP's.  Consult the Best Management Practices for Water Quality (BMP) guide from the CT Division of Forestry for more information.  The site is home to a recently completed "shelterwood" harvest and tree regeneration was already evident.  As recently as 1936, the area was mostly open pasture.  Areas in southern New England, including this one, have been cut for timber several times and have suffered from numerous natural disasters like hurricanes. They are adapted to disturbances.
  {Grapple skidder}
The forestry equipment shown is the smallest available model of Grapple Skidder. It is intended to drag logs from felling locations to the landing.  It allows for rapid removal of logs which gives the forestry practioner  flexibility in planning their operation.  At this site, most of the timber removal occurred during winter when the ground was frozen.  The vehicle is highly maneuverable and designed to minimize impacts to the ground and landscape. Despite a sudden downpour, the low pressure tires are free of mud. 
{Skid trail}  
 This is a skid trail where logs are pulled out from a felling location to a landing.  It is a standard component of forestry operations. While the site can look "torn up" from the skidder tires, stabilizing herbaceous vegetation should return rapidly to the location without reseeding.  In certain circumstances, an annual grass can be used to stabilize areas near streams until vegetation becomes reestablished.  In this photo, water from a rainstorm is visible along the trail because of compaction to the soil.
  {Temporary bridge}
Stream crossings are very common in a forestry operation and are a permitting situation that will often be presented to Inland Wetlands Agencies.  Several different BMP methods may be appropriate depending on the size of the operation, type of watercourse, soils and other factors.  Identifying appropriate methods will be part of an operational plan presented to the Agency. This picture is an example of a temporary steel bridge.  Temporary wooden bridges can be equally effective and far less expensive. 
  {Skidder over bridge}
 The temporary bridge greatly reduces the impact to the intermittent stream channel.  Both the impact of the vehicle and scouring by the log are greatly minimized.  Corduroy might also be utilized in the entrance and exit areas adjacent to the bridge to provide another level of stabilization if unstable soils are present. Note the lack of mud on the tires.
  {Aggregate ford BMP}
The group is standing on an old road where a poorly defined channel crosses.  During the heavy rain experienced at the workshop, water was flowing across the road though this location is typically dry. The supervising forester who created the operational plan determined that a temporary bridge was unnecessary because of the rock substrate and lack of flow.  He decided to use the BMP called a Stone Ford and  placed large aggregate to reduce the chance of erosion from water and disturbance from heavy trucks. 
Roads compact soil and allow for overland flow or interrupt subsurface flow.  The Waterbar is a BMP (adjacent to the blue arrow) that reduces erosion along roads by shunting small amounts of runoff back into the pervious soils of the forest in a controlled manner and reduces the risk of gully formation. Spacing guidelines for Waterbars depend on road slopes and site conditions.  
Content last updated on March 22, 2012