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Florida Land Steward Update, December 18, 2020

SEASON’S GREETINGS

On behalf of the Florida Land Steward Program and all our partners, have a very blessed Holiday season and we look forward to outreach and networking activities in the coming year. The light is visible at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel but we can’t let our guard down yet. Keep social distancing and wearing masks as it is necessary. With continued diligence and the vaccine we are optimistic that we’ll be gathering again at events before the end of 2021. Cheers!

2021 FLORIDA LAND STEWARD WALL CALENDARS

Last call before the Holidays – Request your copy of the 2021 Florida Land Steward calendar while supplies last. The annual Florida Land Steward calendar features beautiful photography, habitat management tips, landowner and management highlights, resource contacts, and more. These make a great Holiday gift for that land steward or outdoor enthusiast on your list. Request your calendar by sending an email to cdemers@ufl.edu with your mailing address. These are first come, first serve to interested landowners certified in the Tree Farm Program, Forest Stewardship Program, Wildlife Habitat Recognition Program, or otherwise recognized, active or engaged in land management.

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA LAUNCHES NEW FIRE UNIVERSITY PODCAST

The UF Disturbance Ecology and Ecological Restoration (DEER) Lab has just launched a podcast named Fire University in a podcast network called Natural Resources University. The network features four science-based podcasts with leading scientists in each topic area. Topics include Deer University focused on white-tailed deer biology and management, Habitat University focused on the science of wildlife habitat management, Pond University focused on delivering the latest science about managing fishing ponds and aquatic ecosystems, and Fire University which delivers the latest research and science on fire ecology and related wildlife and forest management.

The Natural Resources University (NRU) podcasts are available at: https://naturalresourcesuniversity.libsyn.com/

The Fire University Podcasts are available at: https://fireuniversity.libsyn.com/

These podcasts are all available on all the major podcast platforms and people can follow them @UFDEERLab and @NRUniversity where additional content related to natural resource management is posted. For more information contact Dr. Marcus Lashley, (352) 846-0870, marcus.lashley@ufl.edu

CONSIDER A YEAR-END GIFT TO THE UF/IFAS FLORIDA LAND STEWARD PROGRAM

The mission of the UF/IFAS Florida Land Steward Program is to help and encourage private landowners to actively manage their land resources for long-term environmental, economic, and social benefits. This program is largely supported by external partners and donors. If this program has made a difference in your land stewardship efforts please consider a year-end gift. Support the UF/IFAS Florida Land Steward Program here. Thanks!

APPLICATIONS STILL BEING ACCEPTED FOR THE HURRICANE MICHAEL TIMBER RECOVERY BLOCK GRANT PROGRAM– MAKE SURE YOU ENROLL IF YOU WERE IMPACTED BY THIS STORM

Registration for the Florida Timber Recovery Block Grant Program  is available to forest landowners who suffered damage from Hurricane Michael in October 2018. Funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the program is managed by the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) in conjunction with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) and the Florida Forest Service (FFS), which will provide technical assistance to forest landowners required to produce documentation to receive compensation for their loss. The registration deadline was November 20, 2020 but applications submitted after that date will be considered if funding is available.

The direct link to the Block Grant web page is at FloridaDisaster.org/timber. Register there to begin the application process. For questions about the registration or application process call the FDEM hotline at 850-270-8317.

For more details and tips on the application process and other information see the UF/IFAS Timber Recovery Block Grant blog post. .

LEADERSHIP OF FORESTRY AND CONSERVATION ORGANIZATIONS ESTABLISH COMMON GROUND ON ROLE OF PRIVATE WORKING FORESTS IN MITIGATING CLIMATE CHANGE

Over 40 environmental, conservation and forest business leaders today announced an agreement of principles on the important role sustainably managed forests and forest products can play in mitigating climate change. The organizations include American Forests, American Forest Foundation, Environmental Defense Fund, National Alliance of Forest Owners, The Nature Conservancy, and the CEOs of 43 forestry businesses representing over 46 million acres of working forests across the United States.  See the press release here.

FRA Forest Carbon Fact Sheets

The Forest Resources Association (FRA) has developed new fact sheets that show the role of forestland in sequestering and storing carbon. The fact sheets present the status and trends in forest carbon storage and sequestration using data from the USDA Forest Service Forest Inventory and Analysis program. These fact sheets are a useful tool to show the importance of managed forestlands to address climate change mitigation at the national, regional, and state levels.

See the FRA forest carbon report for Florida and other states here 

USDA OFFERS DISASTER ASSISTANCE TO LANDOWNERS AND AG PRODUCERS IMPACTED BY HURRICANE SALLY

Hurricane Sally’s flooding and high winds impacted agricultural operations in Florida and surrounding states. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has technical and financial assistance available to help farmers, landowners, and livestock producers recover. Contact your local USDA Service Center to report losses and learn more about program options available to assist in recovery from crop, land, infrastructure and livestock losses and damages. Read more on available assistance programs here.

FUNDING AVAILABLE FROM THE NATURE CONSERVANCY (TNC) TO TREAT COGONGRASS IN CENTRAL PANHANDLE REGION OF FLORIDA

Do you have a cogongrass problem on property in Calhoun, Gadsden, or Liberty Counties?  The TNC North Florida Program has funding for 120 total acres of cogongrass treatment in counties surrounding the Apalachicola National Forest. Private landowners in Calhoun, Gadsden, and Liberty Counties who would like to be considered for this funding should contact Brian Pelc, (850) 222-0199 x103, bpelc@tnc.org

What does cogongrass look like? See this identification guide for cogongrass

SIGN UP FOR FLORIDA LAND STEWARD EMAIL UPDATES

Don’t miss out on news and events! Sign up for the regular email updates! Send an email to Chris at cdemers@ufl.edu to be added to the email listserv. Florida Land Steward email updates are sent once a week or every other week and include the latest calendar of workshops, tours and other events; a link to the current issue of this quarterly newsletter; updates on cost-share and other assistance programs, opportunities, and resources; and other stewardship related news and information.

UPCOMING EVENTS AND WEBINARS

See our Events Calendar and News page for upcoming events, webinars, webinar and event materials, and the latest news on assistance programs and other opportunities and information.

ACCESS THE QUARTERLY FLORIDA LAND STEWARD NEWSLETTER ONLINE

Access the current and back issues of the quarterly Florida Land Steward newsletter here.

HAVE AN EVENT OR RELATED NEWS TO SHARE?

Drop a line with the details and link(s) to Chris Demers at cdemers@ufl.edu.