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Forestland Parcelization in Upstate New York Despite Economic Stagnation and a Declining Population

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Nonindustrial private forestlands (NIPFs) account for a majority of the forested working landscape in the eastern United States. Throughout the United States, NIPF average ownership sizes continue to decline. Smaller parcel sizes create declining economies of scale for forest managers and timber harvesters, threatening the viability of the forested working landscape and, in turn, wood supply. This study documents the parcelization of NIPF holdings in a central New York State county during the last 25 years of the 20th century. The findings indicate the average parcel size of NIPFs decreased from 36 to 24 ac over the study period, despite a decline in population in the county. Although average parcel size is declining, a large percentage of the rural forestland remains in acreage classes suitable for forest management, as long as the forest products industry can adapt to changes on the landscape.

Keywords: Nonindustrial private forestland; family forest; forest ownership fragmentation; small woodlots; timber supply

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2006

More about this publication?
  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Northern Journal of Applied Forestry covers northeastern, midwestern, and boreal forests in the United States and Canada.
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