Wooden Spoons for Woodcock

  • Bill O'Neill Michigan Department of Natural Resources
  • David Neumann Michigan Department of Natural Resources
  • Jagdish Poudel Michigan Department of Natural Resources

Abstract

The American woodcock (Scolopax minor; hereafter, woodcock) is an important game species in central and eastern North America. In this paper, we argue that the wildlife community should consider several novel ideas. At the landscape level, one of the most effective ways to perpetuate aspen (Populus spp.) forests is through commercial forest management. Aspen underpins the major forest products industries: its fiber is highly sought after for pulp, paper, oriented strand board and other engineered lumber products, and lumber. The most cost-effective and reliable way to maintain woodcock habitat is through commercial forest  management and through periodic timber harvests. Non-commercial habitat management is possible but expensive and time consuming. Support for forest products industry business attraction and development is good for woodcock habitat, good for local communities, and good for local economies. We recommend that the wildlife community consider greater involvement in the broader social discussion over the use of wood products, and be actively engaged in discussions involving economic development and energy use by the forest products industry at the state and local level.

Published
2019-12-02
Section
Conservation Strategies