Alabama Forest Owners' Association, Inc.                 Advocate for the Forest Owner

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SEPTEMBER 2009 News Conference for Forest Owners
Sponsored by the Alabama Forest Owners' Association, Inc.
This Conference was recorded on SEPTEMBER 16, 2009.

to Listen to the
This conference is in .mp3 format, which is compatible with Windows Media Player and most other media devices.

Hayes D. Brown   Alabama Forest Owners' Association

Hayes D. Brown

starting time: (00:00)


Hayes D. Brown, attorney and forest owner, will moderate this news conference. Hayes' email address is

Click Here to View & Hear Prior News Conferences.


Marc Morano

Hear Conference


Pound of Prevention Worth an Ounce of Cure

Marc Morano is Executive Editor and Chief Correspondent for, a website designed to be the "premier news and information center for global warming and related news on environment and energy." Morano on climate news reporters: “Sadly, many of today’s mainstream climate reporters would be better suited writing newsletters for Al Gore than attempting to inform the public about the latest climate science developments.” We asked Marc to tell us about the science behind global warming and the potential costs of some of the popular solutions such as cap and trade legislation and ethanol and other renewable energy subsidies. We also asked him what he thinks about the idea of landowners selling or giving away development rights through conservation easements in order to sell carbon offsets. Good idea? We doubt it.

Phone: (202) 536-5052


Scott P. Jones

Hear Conference


Private is not Public

Scott Jones is Chief Executive Officer of the  Forest Landowners Association, a national landowner organization which strives to support through advocacy, education, and information, forest landowners' responsible management of their private property. An August 14, 2009 speech on the State of the Forests by U. S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack ruffled the feathers of numerous private forest owners across the country. He seemed to confuse public and private forests, the problems faced by each, and the solutions the federal government might impose to solve the perceived problems. Fortunately, Scott Jones and FLA didn't hesitate to write a letter to Sec. Vilsack stating, "While forest health has declined on public land it has improved on private lands which incorporate 60% of our nation's forests." You may believe Scott's letter could have been more strongly worded, but it has opened the door for talks with Vilsack's staff, an important first step in developing a dialogue with the Secretary.

Scott recommends you read FLA's national priorities for private forests requested by USDA. He also invites you to attend FLA's National Forest Landowner Advocacy Day-October 20, 2009.

Phone: 800-325-2954


Tanya Baker

Hear Conference


4-Legged Forestry Workers

Tanya Baker and her husband own and operate Settler Valley Ranch in Dewey, Arizona. We learned about Tanya's work with goats when someone sent us an article on a novel way to prevent forest fires that was being used by The Nature Conservancy in Wickenburg, Arizona. Tanya was quoted in the article: "They're one of the very few animals that are browsers, that will eat multiple types of vegetation." "The [70] goats can chew up about a quarter of an acre a day. Baker uses an electric fence to make sure the goats graze in the areas that will most benefit fire officials. The fences also serve as a method of keeping predators out." While Tanya is not using her goats to prepare land for planting trees or for removing weeds such as kudzu or privet, it doesn't take much of a stretch to imagine doing that here in Alabama.

Tanya recommends the following websites for further study:

Goat and Poultry Auctions in Alabama:

  • Clay County (Goodwater): Call Richard Askew at (256) 839-6824
  • East Alabama (Woodland): Call Phil Stewart, (256) 419-8527
  • Alabama (Boaz): David Sumners, (256) 878-0739
  • Southeast Alabama (Clayton): Rodney Hurst, (334) 695-2438

Phone: (928) 710-3700


John R. Gwaltney

Hear Conference


Southeastern Flora

John Gwaltney is President of Forestry Suppliers, a company that many of us have used to find tree planting dibbles, snake leggings, tree marking paint and just about anything else that forest owners need to help them manage their land. But today, we asked John to tell us about his hobby. He has collected and posted to his website,, more than 14,100 photos of more than 1,000 species of native and naturalized wildflowers that may be found in the Southeastern U.S. Most of us have found wildflowers on our land that we couldn't identify, so Southeastern Flora should come in handy the next time you come home with two or three unknowns in your truck. "You can easily identify trees, shrubs, vines, and herbaceous plants without knowing how to read a plant identification key. Simply define a few traits about your specimen, and the visual photo search results will help you narrow your selection to the exact species." Have fun.

Phone: (601) 354-3565


Robert B. Carr, III

Hear Conference


Mineral Resources Under Alabama Forests

Bob Carr is an Alabama Licensed Professional Geologist and president of Coal Carr, Inc., a geological consulting firm established in 1991. We asked Bob to tell us about the rock and mineral resources in Alabama and the kinds of services a geologist might be able to perform for forest owners. He listed the following activities that he does for landowners:

  1. Appraise the mineral property for estate tax purposes.
  2. Design and monitor the property’s mineral exploration.
  3. Evaluate the minerals on the property for quantity and quality of the minerals.
  4. Negotiate mining leases and/or contract mining agreements with the mining company for the landowner.
  5. Monitor mining, mineral production and royalty payments for the landowner, assuring the mining company’s compliance with the terms of the lease.

Minerals in the Economy of Alabama, 2007 by Lewis S. Dean and published by the Geological Survey of Alabama will give you a good overview of a wide variety of rocks and minerals found in our state. Bob also suggested you take a look at the Office of Surface Mining's website. It "contains much pine and hardwood information." Once opened,  click on the search button and type the desired subject.

Phone: (205) 902-4156


Dr. Michael Kane

Hear Conference


Plantation Management Research Cooperative

Mike Kane is Professor of Quantitative Silviculture at the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia and Director of the Plantation Management Research Cooperative. Ninety-eight publications are listed (some linked) on the PMRC website. We boiled down the topics to "If we planted this type of tree at this density on this site and fertilized it at this age and killed weed competition in this year, etc., etc., how many tons of wood would we produce per acre?" Another link on the PMRC website lists field-based studies with executive summaries. In short, PMRC scientists have looked for the answers to many of our questions about investing in forestry and we thank them for doing that. We look forward to hearing about future research plans that will help us stay in business.

Phone: (706) 542-3009


D. Gannon Murphy

Hear Conference


Starting a Trail-based Business – It ain’t easy.

Gannon Murphy is a long-time member of AFOA and recently began development of "an ATV/dirt bike trails riding and camping facility" called Doc Hilt Trails on about 500 acres in Clay County, Alabama. Gannon has been busy the past year seeking approval from various government agencies for water and other necessary amenities, opening new trails, posting boundaries to prevent trespass, cleaning up camping and picnicking sites, and most important, promoting the trails and camping opportunities to trail riders. The last time we saw him, he and wife Nancy and son Nolen were telling the members of the Cheaha Trail Riders what a great time they could have at Doc Hilt Trails.

Gannon suggests you check the following websites:

A Few Stories on Trails from Past Issues of Capital Ideas - Live!

Phone: (770) 241-3182


Dr. Jack Lutz

Hear Conference


Timber Market Drivers: Housing & Paper

Jack Lutz is Principal and Forest Economist of the Forest Research Group and Director of Global Research and Valuations for Four Winds Capital Management. Last winter, Jack wrote one of his Forest Research Notes (Vol. 5, No. 4) on Housing, Lumber and Logs and will speculate today on when he expects housing starts to recover - and why. Early this year, he wrote the next issue of Forest Research Notes (Vol. 6, No. 1) on Paper, Pulp and Logs, saying, "But for the timberland owner, pulpwood (and chip) prices are not strongly correlated with pulp prices. This is in part because pulp mills generally run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so demand is fairly constant. Pulpwood prices move up and down as its supply is affected by such factors as weather (including hurricanes) and diesel and gasoline prices."

An index to past Forest Research Notes is on the web at

Phone: (978) 432-1794




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