For woodland owners with an interest in managing their woodlands
Once you finish measuring the trees, what do you have? You have the information (measurements) needed to estimate characteristics of your woodland, such as board foot volume per acre, that are used to decide how to manage your woodland. Converting tree measurements into woodland characteristics is relatively straight-forward but is very tedious, involves considerable detail, and is error prone.
This is where TIGER for Woodlands and Compartments comes in. It is an easy-to-use computer program that will estimate the information you need to decide what to dovolume per acre of each product you measured (pulp, sawtimber, and veneer). TIGER will display the distribution of the diameters of the trees which is also useful when deciding which management actions might be desirable. It will also display what are called stocking guides which are used to decide how crowded the forest is and whether a thin is necessary. You can do all of this and more easily with TIGER for Woodlands and Compartments. The program also can be used to assess tornado and storm damage and timber trespass.
So where do you get training to do an inventory and help in deciding how to interpret your inventory? From a trained forester and by reading. Every state has extension foresters and state foresters that might be able to help you. If enough people are interested, they can organize training sessions. Many states have a program similar to the Master Gardener program that trains residents how to manage their woodlands. You can contact state or county extension agents to learn about what is available. They are often very valuable for the individuals who wants to get involved in managing their woodlands. Forest consultants could also do the training, and we are trying to find some who would be willing to conduct training sessions.
There are many sources of information that you can read that discuss aspects of woodland management and inventory, and we recommend that you read some of them. On the following pages are suggestions for where you might start looking for information about inventory, woodland management, and resources available in your state. There are many more that you can find with a web search.