Woodlot Owner of the Year

Department of Natural Resources

July 20, 2006 10:28 AM

Duncan and Laurie Johnson, of South Maitland, Hants Co., are the provincial woodlot owners of the year.

They were chosen as the provincial winners from regional finalists in central, eastern and western Nova Scotia.

"This award is dedicated to Nova Scotia's small private woodlot owners, who provide more than half of the province's wood supply, own almost half of the forested land in Nova Scotia, and add so much to our economic output," said Natural Resources Minister David Morse. "We are recognizing Duncan and Laurie for their enthusiastic and innovative approach to managing their woodlot."

Because woodlots are privately owned, the owners invest their own time, money, effort and enthusiasm to the health of their properties.

Nominations for this award were evaluated by Natural Resources staff members for regional winners, while the provincial winner was selected by a committee of two foresters, a wildlife biologist, and an environment studies graduate student.

The 2006 Woodlot Owner of the Year Award will be officially presented to the Johnsons at a public field tour on their woodlot Saturday, Sept. 30.

"The Johnsons have recognized that there is more to a woodland than trees. Their land use includes developing a Shubenacadie River white water rafting company, and creating a pet crematory and cemetery. They have a botannical garden, recreation fields, golf driving net, lodge and outdoor pool and lots of hiking trails," said Don Cameron, a regional forester with the Department of Natural Resources.

Other regional winners were Tom Ernst of Mahone Bay, Lunenburg Co., who won for the western region and Eldon Taylor of Antigonish in the eastern region.

This is the 17th year for this award which recognizes outstanding achievements in woodlot management. So far a total of 103 woodlot owners have been recognized. They are evaluated on: their effort and commitment to setting and meeting sustainable goals for their land; improving their knowledge or understanding of the forest land or the forest in general; improving the condition, access, and health of their woodland; integrated resource management, with an emphasis on wood production; and considering values such as wildlife habitat and woodlot management.

Nova Scotia residents who own between 20 to 800 hectares (50 to 2,000 acres) of woodland in the province are eligible. Nominations are accepted at Department of Natural Resources offices until March 31 of each year.


FOR BROADCAST USE:

     This year's Woodlot Owner of the Year Award is going to

Duncan and Laurie Johnson, of South Maitland, Hants County.     
     
     The Johnsons were selected as the provincial winners from

regional winners in central, eastern and western Nova Scotia.
     
     Natural Resources Minister David Morse said the award

recognizes Duncan and Laurie for their enthusiastic and

innovative approach to managing their woodlot.

     Mr. Morse will present the award to the Johnsons at a

public field tour on their woodlot Saturday, September 30th.

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Media Contacts: Simon Mutabazi
                Natural Resources
                902-424-5444
                E-mail: woodlot@gov.ns.ca

                Tim Dunne
                Natural Resources
                902 424-5239
                Dunnetij@gov.ns.ca