Over twenty landowners and others joined Byron and Nancy Stutzman to walk their woods and learn about some of their stewardship practices on the woodland in Ware and Hardwick. They’ve been working on improving the forest health, diversifying the species and improving access. Several timber sales over the past decade have improved spacing and the quality of remaining trees. The next timber sale will focus on removing white ash in the northern area of the property. White ash is threatened by the emerald ash borer, and many trees are already suffering from a general decline that is afflicting white ash throughout the area.
The Flat Brook flows through the property. The beaver have left their mark along the waterway, by plugging up the culverts and cutting many trees. A large beaver dam is found on the eastern edge of the large ponded area. Great blue herons are using several of the standing dead trees for their nests.
This walk was co-sponsored by the MassConn Sustainable Forest Partnership, North Quabbin Regional Landscape Partnership, Massachusetts Tree Farm Committee and the East Quabbin Land Trust.