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upcoming events

Forest Management for Wildlife Symposium:

Ruffed Grouse, American Woodcock, Young Forests, & More


Cacapon Resort State Park

818 Cacapon Lodge Dr, Berkeley Springs, WV 25411


Thursday, July 11, 2024, 8:30 am - 1:00 pm 

(possible field trip after)


Register here                    More information here


Why forest management?

Forests are the #1 land cover in Maryland and much of the mid-Atlantic, but many of our forests lack a healthy understory and the structural and age diversity that can help support a wide variety of wildlife. Sustainable forest management practices can significantly enhance habitat and provide habitat for a diverse array of wildlife species.



This symposium will provide landowners and land managers insights about how to implement forest management practices that can benefit a diversity of wildlife, including ruffed grouse, American woodcock, rabbits, wild turkey, golden-winged warblers, white-tailed deer, pollinators, and more. 


Specialists in wildlife, forestry, and financial incentive programs will present practical and sustainable tips for forest management, timber harvests, and financial incentives available to benefit wildlife on your property. 




Live Workshopping

We plan to dedicate the final 45 minutes of the symposium for our speakers and specialists to rotate around the room to meet landowners and provide ideas and suggestions for forest management on printed maps of interested participant’s properties. 


If you own forestland and are interested in receiving live suggestions about your property as part of the workshop, please let us know in the registration page and we will reach out about printing a poster-size map of your property that can be workshopped live and in-person during the final session at the symposium. 



This symposium will be held live at Cacapon Resort State Park in Berkeley Springs, WV, on Thursday, July 11, 2024, from 8:30 am to 1:00 pm (possible field trip after lunch). 


Lunch will be available to all, but we would welcome a $20 (or more) donation (cash or check only) to defray costs of venue and catering. 


The event will be streamed live on Zoom and recorded for future viewing (you will receive a confirmation email with a Zoom link even if you choose to attend in-person). 



Free of charge; $20 donations (or more, cash or check only) are welcome to defray costs.


8:30 - 9:00 am 

Coffee, continental breakfast, and conversation

9:00 - 9:10 am

Introduction & Welcome

Luke Macaulay, University of Maryland Extension

Sheldon Owen, University of West Virginia Extension


9:10 - 9:40 am 

Game Species & Forest Management. Reina Tyl, Pennsylvania Game Commission. Bob Long, Maryland Department of Natural Resources. Emily Boyd, Pennsylvania Game Commission.

9:40 - 10:10 am

Non-Game Wildlife & Forest Management. Richard Bailey, State Ornithologist, West Virginia Department of Natural Resources.

10:10 - 10:30 am 

Break, Q&A, & Networking

Forest Management

10:30- 10:50 am

Forest Management Approaches: Dynamic Forest Blocks. Ben Larson, Ruffed Grouse Society. 

10:50 - 11:15 am

Creating a forest management plan for your property: Practical tips and Implementation.  Maryland Forest Service, West Virginia Forest Service, Pennsylvania Forestry.

Technical and Financial Assistance

Setting Objectives. Luke Macaulay, Ph.D. University of Maryland.

11:15 -11:20 am

Woodland Stewardship Network

Craig Highfield, Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay

11:20 - 11:25

Funding for habitat improvement: Edge feathering, Thinning, Timber Stand Improvements, Harvests. USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service

11:25 - 12:10pm

Workshopping Property Maps: Speakers and specialists will rotate around tables in the room to provide ideas for management and financial incentive programs on poster-size paper maps of landowner’s property.  This will occur at a roundtable so everyone can watch, learn, and contribute to forest management planning on a property.

12:10 - 1:00 pm

Lunch, Q&A, & Networking

1:00-3:30 pm

Potential Field trip demonstrating various forest management practices.  


Howard SCD had the privilege of hosting a farm and conservation tour on Friday, May 5th for the new Maryland Department of Agriculture Secretary, Kevin Atticks.  The tour included stops at Larriland Farm, Fine Idea Farm, Colmont Farm for lunch, Elioak and ended at Manor Hill Brewing. 

Click here to see MDA's photo release of the event.

Past Events

     As part of an Agriculture Initiative*, Howard SCD created raised beds for the vegetable garden at Swansfield Elementary, one of three Title I elementary schools that will be participating this year.  Planning began more than a year ago, and we all know what happened next.  So, as we pick back up, prepared and with momentum, we are excited to see these raised beds built and installed.  Next will be planting and mulching.  We cannot wait to see the student's excitement to participate, learn and be outdoors.  Thanks to the school grounds and maintenance crew for clearing the area for the garden.  They were quite helpful.  A planting was also done at Cradlerock Elementary.  We appreciate all who helped to support this initiative.  
     *The Urban Agriculture Initiative is a collaborative effort with Howard County Public Schools and the University of Maryland Extension - Master Gardeners Program to create vegetable gardens with Title I schools.  

Urb Ag planting.jpg
School Urb Ag bed.jpg
Calkins Urb Ag planting.jpg
Urban Ag 5.jpg
Urban Ag school planting.jpg
vegetable planting.jpg
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