TERRACE, B.C.: A Forest Enhancement Society of B.C. (FESBC) funded project to commercially thin trees within the Terrace Community Forest (TCF) tenure is currently in the planning and development phase and is targeting to be operational in the near future. The project is rehabilitating low value forests, enhancing wildlife habitat, and increasing the opportunity to recover wood fibre for other uses, such as making wood pellets. The information learned from this project is being shared to benefit other forested areas of the Coast Mountains Resource District.

“We’ve employed purpose-driven silviculture, harvesting, and spacing plans to affect change on the forest landscape within the TCF,” said Kim Haworth, General Manager of TCF. “Our Community Forest has, within its operating areas, a large contingent of unmanaged, high density second growth forest. As a result of this overcrowding, growth rates of all trees are negatively impacted and understory development of small shrubs and vegetation is non-existent, leading to poor biodiversity values necessary for wildlife sustainability. The work we’re doing, thanks to FESBC-funding, is changing that.”

The TCF covers 25,165 hectares located within the Coast Mountains Resource District . The community holds a long-term Community Forest Agreement with exclusive rights to harvest crown timber within the area. The second growth forests Haworth refers to make up about 10% of the TCF’s Timber Harvesting Land Base. Without some form of economical harvest treatment, the area would be left with its current composition thus delaying the availability of trees for harvest and increasing the amount of fibre not being fully utilized in future harvesting. A lack of treatment would lead to a reduction of the Community Forest’s allowable annual cut, lessening the opportunity for the TCF to generate financial benefits for the community.