Below is a list of web sites about forestry and land management in Massachusetts. The list is by no means comprehensive, but many of the sites contain additional links to other great sites. The Department of Conservation and Recreation has not reviewed the content of these sites for accuracy, and it is always a good idea contact your Service Forester for information specific to Massachusetts.
Helpful Links and Resources
An all purpose forestry website that contains thousands of links to a variety of forest topics including: tree identification, insects, disease, silviculture, logging, etc.
American Forests is the nation’s oldest nonprofit citizens’ conservation organization. Citizens concerned about the waste and abuse of the nation’s forests founded American Forests in 1875. The organization is proud of its historic roots in the development of America’s conservation movement and proud of the new approaches the organization has developed to help people improve the environment in the 21st Century.
Contains information on all major watersheds in Massachusetts such as stream flow, citizens groups, superfund sites, wetland restoration.
In 1995 a handful of foresters were introduced to each other in Santa Fe, New Mexico and the "Forest Guild" emerged. The mission of the Forest Guild is to... "promote ecologically, economically, and socially responsible forestry as a means of sustaining the integrity of forest ecosystems and the human communities dependent upon them. The Guild provides training, policy analysis, and research to foster excellence in stewardship, to support practicing foresters and allied professionals, and to engage a broader community in the challenges of forest conservation and management." To learn more about the Forest Guild or to download/order available publications
Go to this site to learn about Harvard Forests long-term ecological research projects. Through the years researchers at the Forest have focused on silviculture and forest management, soils and the development of forest site concepts, the biology of temperate and tropical trees, forest ecology and economics and ecosystem dynamics.
The MassWildlife Landowner Incentive Program is a partnership that provides private landowners interested in developing and maintaining wildlife habitat on their property with financial and technical assistance. State biologists are currently working with private landowners to enhance and protect important habitats across the Commonwealth. To promote the creation/restoration of high quality wildlife habitat that supports wildlife populations in Massachusetts, funding has been awarded to the state for on-the-ground activities that (1) enhance wildlife habitat and provide benefits for species-at-risk or (2) that meet goals outlined by LIP.
“Introduction to New England Forests” developed by Brian Donahue. A general overview of the history and ecology of New England’s forests for small landowners that includes information on stewardship, management and protection of forests and links to resources about New England’s forests.
Massachusetts Audubon Society is the largest conservation organization in New England, concentrating its efforts on protecting the nature of Massachusetts for people and wildlife. Go to this site to learn about Mass Audubon’s more than 29,000 acres of conservation land, educational and environmental policy programs, and recent bird sightings throughout the Commonwealth.
Massachusetts premier website on wildlife, hunting, fishing. Go to this site to learn about the 100,000 acre wildlife management area system.
The Massachusetts Forestry Association was begun in 1970 as the Massachusetts Land League to encourage landowners to care for their forestland and conserve it for future generations to use and enjoy. MFA’s mission is to be exemplary stewards of our forest resources, and help others understand, respect, care for, and use this renewable resource.
This site contains an interactive mapping service that includes aerial photographs of the state. Also contains links to MassGIS, which has an extensive repository of GIS data layers for Massachusetts.
Explore the biodiversity of the Commonwealth. This site includes extensive information on the state’s biodiversity including threatened and endangered species, unique natural communities, rare plants and animals, vernal pools and maps of locations of high biological conservation value. Information on
Forestry and Rare Species , NHESP Review of Forest Cutting Plans , and Conservation Management Practices is available at this web site.
Massachusetts Woodlands Cooperative is a forest landowner management, processing and marketing cooperative organized by and on behalf of forest landowners in western Massachusetts. The mission of the Cooperative is to maintain the environment and character of western Massachusetts through the protection, enhancement and careful economic development of one of the region's most plentiful resources, the forest. The work of the cooperative is based on specific values, guided by clear principles, and directed toward business goals identified and supported by its membership.
MassWoods.net was developed to help landowners make informed decisions at critical decision making times. The goal is to provide accurate information to woodland owners when they need to make two critical decisions about the future of their land: 1) the potential sale of timber and 2) planning for the future of the property. The site features an interactive map to direct landowners to local resources to help them with their decisions. Service foresters, local land trusts, statewide land trusts and conservation organizations are all listed for each town across the state. We will be expanding this list of resources to include licensed foresters and community members that can also help landowners. Each month a new update will be posted aimed at delivering timely and relevant information about landowner decisions, issues, programs, opportunities and successes. This site will also serve as the main portal for UMass Extension’s Forest Conservation Program. Look for information on our programs and research including: Coverts, A CoOperative Resource Network (ACORN) and Cases of Conservation. Licensed foresters will find links relevant to licensing and continuing education. We are also developing a web based database for the Southern New England Stumpage Survey. Landowners looking for information on forestry programs will also be able to find information and links. The web site also encourages landowners to consider the role their properties plays in their landscape and communities as they make decision about their land. It also encourages community members and municipal officials to value private woodland owners for the many public benefits they provide to the community with relevant links and PDFs such as: AFT's "Cost of Community Services", MA Audubon's "Losing Ground", and Harvard Forests "The Illusion of Preservation".
The National Invasive Species Information Center (NISIC) was established in 2005 at the National Agricultural Library to meet the information needs of users including the National Invasive Species Council (Council). NISIC creates and manages the www.invasivespeciesinfo.gov Web site. The Web site serves as a reference gateway to information, organizations, and services about invasive species.
This website was developed to be used by timberland owners, as well as a reference source for accountants, attorneys, consulting foresters and other professionals who work with timberland owners by answering specific questions regarding the tax treatment of timber related activities.
Learn about one of the oldest conservation organizations in New England dedicated to the region’s forests. This site contains useful information on land protection, education, sustainable forest management, foundation forests, exciting, large-scale conservation easements and links to other organizations involved with forestry in New England.
The New England Society of American Foresters (NESAF) is a multi- state society within the national Society of American Foresters. NESAF is composed of four divisions representing the six New England states of Connecticut (CT), Maine (ME), Massachusetts (MA), New Hampshire (NH), Rhode Island (RI), and Vermont (VT). The Divisions are Green Mountain (VT), Granite State (NH), Maine (ME) and Yankee (RI, CT and MA). Those SAF members residing in the Eastern Canadian Provinces of New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Quebec are may also request membership in the New England Society of American Foresters.
Northern Woodlands’ contributors include many of the Northeast’s leading experts on forestry, conservation, and wildlife. Skillfully written and illustrated, the magazine captures the beauty and spirit of the forest and will keep you up-to-date on natural events and informed about developments in the environmental community including:
- Tips on identifying the trees, plants, and animals in your woods.
- Ways to manage your forest for wildlife and timber.
- The latest on the region’s contentious environmental and economic disputes, from a refreshingly balanced perspective.
- Profiles of people who work the forest.
- Ways to work safely in your woods from cutting trees and chopping firewood to clearing trails
- Updates on standing timber prices, pending legislation, and the activities of environmental and business organizations.
The DAR as of January 1, 2006 began a two-step ban on the importation and sale of more than 140 plants identified as either noxious and/or invasive in the Commonwealth. The Department derives its authority to take this action under Massachusetts General Law including but not limited to, Chapter 128 Section 2 and sections 16 through 31A.
The Private Landowner Network (PLN) is the only national informational resource and database on the internet, specifically designed to address the needs of private landowners and the symbiotic businesses dependent on the private landowner market. The tools and information resources on PLN provide a simple and effective means for landowners to connect with qualified, often local, professionals to navigate the complex ins and outs of real estate transactions, tax and estate planning and land conservation. It enables landowners to access local land trusts and nonprofit conservation organizations, as well as the bewildering array of federal and state financial and technical assistance options.
The Society of American Foresters (SAF) is the national scientific and educational organization representing the forestry profession in the United States. Founded in 1900 by Gifford Pinchot, it is the largest professional society for foresters in the world. The mission of the Society of American Foresters is to advance the science, education, technology, and practice of forestry; to enhance the competency of its members; to establish professional excellence; and, to use the knowledge, skills, and conservation ethic of the profession to ensure the continued health and use of forest ecosystems and the present and future availability of forest resources to benefit society. SAF is a nonprofit organization meeting the requirements of 501 (c) (3). SAF members include natural resource professionals in public and private settings, researchers, CEOs, administrators, educators, and students.
This website is your window into the diverse work of the Trustees of Reservations, the nation’s oldest private, statewide preservation and conservation organization. Since 1891, they have worked to protect over 46,000 acres in Massachusetts, including 91 public reservations. Go to this site to search for a reservation to visit, learn about their history and mission.
Contains information on the species composition, growth and mortality rates, volume, quality and extent of Massachusetts’s forests.
This website is a central clearinghouse for all things related to forests and watersheds. There have been many recent efforts towards managing urban forests for watershed health that have resulted in a variety of highly useful tools and training materials. This site compiles these resources into a format that can be easily accessed and downloaded.
The Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program (WHIP) is a voluntary program that provides technical and financial assistance to landowners who want to improve fish and wildlife habitat or restore natural ecosystems on their land. The NRCS will pay up to 75 percent of the cost of establishing and maintaining conservation practices that are necessary for enhancing/improving wildlife habitat and restoring natural ecosystems. Agreements are from 5 to 10 years in duration. Landowners may sign up for this program at any time through the Massachusetts office in Amherst.