NWTF Dollars At Work: Tobacco Gulch Project

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Funded through a partnership between the National Wild Turkey Federation, Eldorado National Forest, Sierra Nevada Conservancy, and Cal Fire, the Tobacco Gulch Project is a 910 acre forest thinning project located just above the community of Georgetown in El Dorado County, California.  The goals of the project are to improve forest resiliency to wildfire, forest health, and wildlife habitat.  Project activities include mechanical mastication, commercial timber harvest, biomass removal, and prescribed fire.

masticatior
Mulching older age-class brush to make room for new herbaceous plants that have higher value to wildlife.

By removing small diameter trees and older age class shrub/brush species, the project will be setting back succession within the forest and allowing herbaceous plants to provide new growth. In turn, this disturbance stimulates the growth of more nutritional forage for wildlife species that rely heavily upon this food source, such as deer, quail, and of course the wild turkey. Also, by removing these “ladder fuels,” forest managers are able to come back through and manage (or set-back succession again) with prescribed fire into the future, maintaining a healthy forest and healthy wildlife habitats.

unhealthy forest conditions
Unhealthy forest conditions (shown above) not only serve as a severe wildfire risk, but also serve little to no benefit to wildlife.

Activities began in Spring 2019 and are expected to run through Spring 2020.

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