What Is Environmental Land Management?
Landowners have a wide variety of choices in the way they use their land; property management has evolved with these changes in land usage. Environmental land management has shifted, which has led to an increased focus on the entire ecosystem as a whole.
The days of managing one resource are no longer effective and reclamation of resource-depleted lands now requires educated planning in order to end the invasion of exotic species. Habitat restoration and enhancements are greatly needed to restore and maintain a healthy ecosystem.
Mapping and Environmental Land Management
Mapping is an important part of helping landowners manage and develop their property. Properly created maps show landowners cost-effective and efficient ways to meet goals by incorporating property objectives into the maps.
One benefit of a good map is the correct measurement of land. Management services and activities are usually based on a per acre price. The price will be more accurate when the proper acreage is shown on one or more maps.
Landowners request a variety of maps for their environmental land management needs. GPS field computers and desktop software let us create detailed maps including:
Identifies the location of and suggests methods for management buffers of threatened or endangered species of any type of wildlife, including the bald eagle and Florida panther.
Details mitigation areas and management practices prescribed within the boundaries.
Property map showing the property boundary overlaid upon a current aerial view.
Identifies location and proper boundaries of wetlands.
Identifies topography of a property utilizing USGS data.
Detailed maps of burn blocks such as smoke management maps, proximity to smoke-sensitive areas, and firelines (including status).
Shows site-specific soil data obtained from the National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) overlaid upon a current aerial map.
Delineates a property’s current and future habitat status and objectives.
Outlines preparation methods, such as chemical applications and mechanical treatments, like mowing and chopping.
Designed to identify an accurate estimation of timber volumes and value through timber inventories and valuation.
Details acreage and provides a site map for tree plantings.
Site Preparation for Environmental Land Management
Site preparation is an essential part of performing environmental land management plans. Methods include: creating fire lines, mulching, and under-brushing sensitive environmental areas.
Although different in their approach, each technique meets a certain need to properly manage timber and environmental lands.
Chemical Application: Determined by site to effectively reduce invasive exotic species and competing vegetation.
Discing: Creates and rehabilitates fire lines. Prepares land for use as food plots.
Prescribed Burning: Utilizes prescribed burning to reduce competing vegetation.
Removal of Undesirable Tree Species: Mechanical removal of undesirable tree species to increase sunlight to the forest floor.
Land Clearing and Vegetation Management
When clearing land on your property, it is cost-effective to only clear vegetation on the amount of land that will be maintained. Replanting and development should be started as quickly as possible to reduce weed control or the need for another clearing project.
Other considerations in land clearing involve methods for clearing the area. Prescribed burning is one of the most flexible tools in vegetation management. Maps are prepared after discussing the landowner’s reason for the burn and its expected results.
Mapping covers the entire property and individual burn blocks, detailing key danger areas and fire lines. Affected areas outside the property are identified on smoke management maps.
Prescribed burns are adaptable so landowners can achieve property goals and objectives including:
• Habitat enhancement.
• Site preparation.
• Reduction of hazardous fuel loads and competing vegetation.
• Site rehabilitation after a silvicultural treatment.
A properly planned and implemented prescribed burn is an effective, efficient method of land management. Controlled fire resembles natural ecosystem management with the addition of enhanced safeguards.
The following activities are essential parts of prescribed burns.
· Fireline Inspection: Involves inspecting fire line integrity. We note and plan how to resolve details about anything that may compromise the fire’s effectiveness, such as grass and leaves near the line.
· Fireline Placement/Improvement: The entire property is mapped to identify individual burn blocks, fire lines, and key danger areas indicated. Smoke management maps identify affected areas beyond the property.
· Burn Permit: Required notice is made to local and state agencies regarding the burn. We apply for and obtain the burn permit from the Florida Division of Forestry.
· Mop-Up: The monitoring of the prescribed fire when it is done. We use water and other agents to reduce residual smoke.
If you are in need of environmental land management services, contact us today to get a FREE QUOTE!