David Manski: Forest Management Plan

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Planning
NIACS worked with a consulting forester and a private landowner to incorporate climate change information and adaptation actions into a forest management plan. David Manski and Jake Maier discussed the Adaptation Workbook during the summer and fall of 2018.

Project Area

The 35-acre property that David Manski owns is located in Bar Harbor, ME, and is very close to Acadia National Park. The property has a conservation easement that ensures that the land will be used for farming and forestry activities in perpetuity. About 27 acres of the property is forested and dominated with white pine trees that have grown on the site after the land was abandoned for agriculture. A smaller area, about 5 acres in size is used for agriculture, including vegetable production and apple orchards.

Management Goals

Having worked for 35 years to manage cultural and natural resources for the National Park Service, David appreciates that value of having a sound management plan for his own property. He has numerous goals  related to sustainable forest management on the property, including timber production, wildlife habitat, recreational opportunities, aesthetics, and soil and water protection.

Climate Change Impacts

A small pond with herbaceous vegetation around it and conifer trees in the distance.
For this project, the most important anticipated climate change impacts include:
Climate change is causing temperatures to rise locally and across the region. The property is near the Atlantic Ocean (although not vulnerable to sea-level rise), and there here are some uncertainties about whether the ocean may buffer or delay warming
Extreme rain events are becoming more common locally, especially in the spring and fall. These events can cause localized flooding in lower-lying parts of the property.
Heavy and wet winter snows, which may become more common as winter temperatures rise, can bend or break tree branches
Several of the most common tree species are projected to decline as temperatures warm, especially red spruce and balsam fir. White pine is not projected to have substantial changes in suitable habitat, but the species is susceptible to drought and sever

Challenges and Opportunities

Climate change will present challenges and opportunities for achieving the forest management objectives for the property. Climate change and other stressors (such as insect pests, diseases, and invasive species) have the potential to create challenges to the long-term productivity of the forest, particularly if the most common species decline. At the same time, there are currently many opportunities to use active forest management to make the forest better adapted to future climate conditions.

Adaptation Actions

David and Jake are working with NIACS staff to use the Adaptation Workbook to consider potential management actions for the property and integrate these into the management plan and future activities. A number of options are being considered, including the potential to incorporate tree species with more southerly distributions that are not currently present in Maine.

Project Photos

Click to enlarge photos

Forest canopy; mostly white pines.
Thinned white pine forest (with scattered white birch).
A large deformed tree among smaller trees in the forest.
Mixed northern red oak, red maple, white pine stand; even aged and not thinned.
exposed bedrock with white pine forest in background
Fields (now growing organic certified vegetables) and large field grown northern red oaks in background
Close up of lichen and lowbush blueberry growing on exposed granite bedrock

Project Documents

Learn More

To learn more about this project, contact Maria

Last Updated

Wednesday, October 3, 2018