COLLEGE STATION, TX — On Monday, for the first time in the state, the Texas A&M Forest Service marketed and sold 224 acres of timber for the USDA Forest Service.
This large timber sale is a major step in the right direction toward strengthening the Good Neighbor Authority project, designed to make Texas’ forests healthier.
The Good Neighbor Authority agreement gives the Texas A&M Forest Service the power to perform forest management services on National Forest System lands when needed.
This specific project in the Sabine National Forest allowed the Texas A&M Forest Service to thin the timber and keep up with the management of the wood.
The process of thinning the timber in a stand removes selected trees within a marked site in a forest, and helps reduce competition. The remaining trees have better access to the soil nutrients, water and sunlight they need to thrive, which leads to healthier trees.
“When a forests’ timber is left unmanaged, a forest can become stressed,” said Wes Moorehead, the East Texas operations department head for Texas A&M Forest Service. “It’s also more susceptible to disease and pests.”
The collaboration of these two services helps speed up the process and create stronger relationships, thus creating a stronger forest system.
“We had a good relationship with U.S. Forest Service prior to this,” Moorehead said. “But actually kicking the ground together, walking the ground, talking about what can and can’t be done, what should and shouldn’t be done, definitely reinforces those relationships.”
The Texas A&M Forest Service views this project as it’s biggest advantage.