Severance and property taxes

Don Baccus dhogaza at
Sun Aug 3 09:58:48 EST 1997

In article <33E255A4.4BA3 at>,
Allan Derickson  <alland at> wrote:

>I'm not associated with the forest industry but am an independent
>consulting forester. As such, I've looked at a lot of tree covered
>ground, both "natural" and "managed". Your assertion that tree farms are
>not forests strikes me as arbitrary or poorly thought out. I've seen
>natural forests that consisted of one species of a single age
>(monocultures?). I've seen tree farms that consisted of many species of
>multiple ages. Just what is it that essentially defines a "forest" in
>your opinion and how did you arrive at this definition?

Sorry, let me try again:

I'm speaking specifically of westside coniferous forests HERE (not,
say, monospecies forests such as the lodgepole forests of Yellowstone).

The tree farms we've traditionally created here in the PNW are quilts
monospecies, even-aged plots.  There are counterexamples, but the 
vast majority fit that definition.  The flora and fauna they support are
measurably different than those supported by unmanaged forests.

If you want to call a tree farm a "forest", I guess that's a semantic
quibble.  Feel free.  I won't.

When understanding arguments over how to manage our forests, though,
the label is unimportant.  What is important is that these quilts
of monospecies, even-aged plots do not function ecology in the
same way as our unmanaged westside coniferous forests.

As I said, there are ways of getting trees out of our forests which
leave the forest ecosystem largely intact.

>My point is that everything in nature is not infinitely diverse. There
>is a broad continuum in which we exist. Even simple things have value.

This isn't very helpful in a debate over how to manage forest resources,
no matter how appealing a thought this is.  

- Don Baccus, Portland OR <dhogaza at>
  Nature photos, on-line guides, at

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