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Managing Your Woods

More than 70 percent of the woodlands in Pennsylvania are owned by private citizens.

With the proper instruction, tools, and technical assistance, these landowners can manage their land in ways that enhance the production of wood, water, recreation, and wildlife.

Making wise and informed decisions on how to manage land helps conserve the natural resources of Pennsylvania and ensure that forests are resilient and able to withstand future changes.

Service Foresters

The DCNR Bureau of Forestry has assigned a service forester to each county (PDF).

These individuals offer information and advice to managers of rural and community forests and are a resource for the citizens of Pennsylvania, helping to guide landowners and residents in the practice of sustainable forestry.

Some of the topics that service foresters can help address are:

  • Sustainable forest management technical assistance
  • Cost-share assistance
  • Information on hiring a professional forester
  • Help reviewing Forest Stewardship and Natural Resource Conservation Service-related plans
  • Regional planning advice
  • Advice on forestry and water-related best management practices
  • Presentation of educational forestry-related programs to a variety of audiences
  • Urban and community forestry management assistance
  • Tree planting
  • Riparian forest buffers

Consulting Foresters

A consulting forester works with private citizens, schools, municipalities, and other entities that own forestland.

Consultants help forest landowners with the planning and management of their forest or woodlot.

DCNR maintains a list of consulting foresters (PDF) who must meet certain training and educational criteria, along with other resources to guide you through the process.

Penn State Partnership

The DCNR Bureau of Forestry partners with Penn State Extension to offer information about management of woodlands.

The extension’s extensive research knowledge is made available to the public in publications, fact sheets, and workshops.

It also organizes the biennial state wide Woodland Owners conference, which started in 2013 and is held every other year.