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Is Selective Cutting a Panacea for Forest Regulation?

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The problem of public regulation of cutting on privately owned forest lands is confused by failure to distinguish dearly between the economic objective of sustained yield and the silvicultural objective of maintaining the productivity of the forest. Many proponents of regulation, faced with the difficulty of legislating economic sustained yield and moved by fear of destructive cutting, have turned to advocating the universal application of "selective cutting," or the elimination of clear cutting as a silvicultural system. But partial cutting is not adapted to the intolerant species which dominate in many stands, and to force its application where dear cutting is the natural method will prevent reproduction of desirable species and optimum growth. If regulation means legislating bad silviculture, the author is skeptical of the benefits.
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Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Retired as Harriman professor of forestry, Yale University, New Haven, Conn.

Publication date: 1944-05-01

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of Forestry is the most widely circulated scholarly forestry journal in the world. In print since 1902, the Journal has received several national awards for excellence. The mission of the Journal of Forestry is to advance the profession of forestry by keeping forest management professionals informed about significant developments and ideas in the many facets of forestry: economics, education and communication, entomology and pathology, fire, forest ecology, geospatial technologies, history, international forestry, measurements, policy, recreation, silviculture, social sciences, soils and hydrology, urban and community forestry, utilization and engineering, and wildlife management. The Journal is published bimonthly: January, March, May, July, September, and November.

    2016 Impact Factor: 1.675 (Rank 20/64 in forestry)

    Average time from submission to first decision: 39.6 days*
    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

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    Forest Science
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