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Blowdown, COVID Possible Reason For Limited VC Timber Bids

VC Forestry & Land Department

Almost half of the published timber tracts offered for sale on the Vilas County forest did not generate any bids and will be offered again.

The Vilas County Forestry, Recreation, and Land Committee had 22 forest areas advertised for sale. One sale was pulled from opening after a private landowner next to the sale questioning the proposed cutting, favoring “harvesting only mature pine.”

Forest administrator Al Murray agreed to take another look at the cutting objective. Of the 21 timber tracts, 10 received no bids. Asked for his opinion why, Murray felt the market for hardwood and aspen was just not there, mainly due to salvage of the massive blowdown in the Oconto county area last year, but with some impact from the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Only three tracts received more than one bid with the committee accepting the high bids. The total for the 11 tracts sold was $247,483 which were expected to be at least $350,000.

Another landowner was upset over a clear cut on the Vilas County forest along Wooded Lane by the Little Tamarack Flowage area. She indicated the clear cut was for about one/eighth mile with no notice to landowners that was going to happen. The committee discussed possible ways to notify landowners about planned timber sales and felt it could be addressed in the next 15 year forest plan now being worked on.

The committee agreed to have this subject on their future committee agendas.

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