PRESCRIBED FIRE AWARENESS WEEK CONTINUES
Prescribed fire is versatile and cost-effective tool land managers use to reduce hazardous fuels, improve wildlife and range habitats, mitigate insect pests, and maintain fire-dependent ecosystems. Today Florida landowners and land managers use prescribed fire on over 2.1 million acres annually! This can happen, thanks to robust and persistent outreach campaigns by the FL Forest Service and many other agencies and organizations to educate the public and policy makers about the importance of prescribed fire in reducing wildfire risk and all the benefits stated above. With so many coming to the state each year to recreate and live this outreach is so important!
USDA NRCS ANNOUNCES CONSERVATION EASEMENT AND FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE OPPORTUNTIES TO FLORIDA LANDOWNERS
Apply by February 20, 2024
Florida landowners interested in aligning their land uses with conservation values and practices are encouraged to apply for conservation easements and/or land management practice assistance in partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the North Florida Land Trust (NFLT). Landowners that applied for the recent Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) Rural and Family Lands Protection Program (RFLPP) cycle are encouraged to apply for potential match opportunities.
As part of a Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) initiative, (Ocala to Osceola Wildlife Corridor), NRCS and its partners have funding to pay landowners for conservation easements and/or land management practices on their land. NRCS and NFLT will be responsible for screening for land eligibility, developing conservation project applications, negotiating conservation easement terms, and/or developing a land management plan. Landowners interested in these funding opportunities are strongly encouraged to reach out for guidance on the options available prior to applying. Applicants will need to take appropriate steps necessary to establish farm records and certifications. See this USDA NRCS Financial Assistance News Page for details about these opportunities, grant project area, application requirements, and contacts. Applications will be accepted through February 20, 2024.
TAX TIPS FOR FOREST LANDOWNERS: 2023 TAX YEAR
Many forest management activities you conduct can have tax implications. Generally, all income received is taxable unless excluded by tax law, and nothing is deductible unless a provision allows it. Understanding the forest-related provisions and integrating tax planning into your forest management can help lower your tax. The annual tax tips publication, produced by the U.S. Forest Service and academic partners from the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and The University of Georgia Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, is intended to be an informational and educational resource for you and your tax advisor, but is not intended as financial, tax, or legal advice. Please consult with your tax advisor concerning your particular tax situation. The information in the guide is current as of December 20, 2023.
2024 NEW YEAR 30% ENROLLMENT DISCOUNT FOR THE ONLINE FOREST LANDOWNER ACADEMY
Get the promotion code and enroll by February 29, 2024
Take advantage of this limited time 30% promotional discount to enroll in the online Forest Landowner Academy. Use promotion code: SWDXWF
Are you new to forestry and land management? Need a good primer on forest management concepts and next steps? Hard to fit travel for tours and workshops in your busy schedule? Need a course in a self-paced format that you can take on your own time? This course is for you! Forest landowners, and others in need of forest management information, are encouraged to enroll in this self-paced, online course to connect with forest management experts at the University of Florida and receive quality core educational content on forestry and multiple-use stewardship concepts.
The 7 course modules cover a variety of topics on understanding your forest resources, developing your management plan, timber management, marketing forest products, other forest enterprises such as pine straw and hunting leases, wildlife management, and planning for the future. Each module includes recorded video from the field or virtual classroom, links to references, and an assessment where you can apply what you’ve learned to your land or situation. The cost of the course is $150. Those completing the course will earn a University of Florida Certificate of Completion.
Direct link to enroll in the Forest Landowner Academy:
Use promotion code: SWDXWF
Questions about the course can be directed to Chris Demers, email@example.com, (352) 846-2375.
PUTNAL TREE FARM TOUR RESCHEDULED TO APRIL 5, 2024
The Tree Farmer of the Year tour at the Putnal Tree Farm has been moved to April 5, 2024. If you have registered for the tour before the rescheduling, you are all set. All registrations for the tour have been retained and are good for the new date Details and registration here.
Tree Farm award recognition: The Florida Tree Farm Program is proud to recognize Mr. Terry Putnal and, his father, Howard Putnal (in memoriam), as the 2023 Jon Gould Florida Outstanding Tree Farmer of the Year. Watch the 2023 Florida Jon Gould Outstanding Tree Farmer video featuring the Putnals here.
HURRICANE IDALIA SILIVICULTURE RECOVERY PROGRAM NOW OPEN FOR ENROLLMENT
The Hurricane Idalia Silviculture Recovery Program is designed to ensure the long-term viability of Florida’s forest lands and restore the ecological and economic value of timberland damaged by Hurricane Idalia. The program offers landowners cost-share funding specifically for site preparation and tree replanting on classified agricultural lands. It is administered by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Florida Forest Service and funded by the state of Florida.
To be eligible for the program, practice sites must have been forested on August 30, 2023, and experienced significant timber damage that impacted the future viability of the stand as a direct result of Hurricane Idalia. Qualified applicants are limited to timber landowners in Charlotte, Citrus, Columbia, Dixie, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Hernando, Jefferson, Lafayette, Levy, Madison, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas, Sarasota, Suwannee and Taylor counties, whose timber experienced significant damage from Hurricane Idalia.
The program is currently open for applications at the online portal or by mail. Please visit https://IdaliaTimberRecovery.fdacs.gov to apply. Applications will be accepted until June 30, 2024.
An annual tradition, the Florida Land Steward calendar features beautiful photography, our Florida Land Steward Landowner of the Year, habitat management tips, partnership opportunities, resource contacts, and more. Request your calendar by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your mailing address. These are first come, first serve to interested landowners, while supplies last.
Want to contribute to future editions? If you would like to contribute to the production of future editions of the Florida Land Steward Calendar you can donate at https://wildlifeflorida.org/wildlife/ In the “Comments” field please indicate “Private Lands Fund”. Thank you!
GET 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 email@example.com 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 the quarterly Florida Land Steward newsletter; updates on cost-share and other assistance programs, opportunities, and resources; and other stewardship related news and information.
See our Events Calendar and News page for upcoming events and ongoing programs, initiatives, and opportunities.
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 at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CONSIDER A GIFT IN SUPPORT OF 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 partners and donors. If this program has made a difference in your land stewardship efforts, please consider a gift. Support the UF/IFAS Florida Land Steward Program here. Thanks!