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MRV Biodiversity Series – Ecological Forest Management

October 19, 2023 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

Ecological Forestry – Healthy Woods are Messy

In October, the Biodiversity Series will continue with ‘Ecological Forestry presented by Ethan Tapper – the Chittenden County Forester.

What does it mean to love a forest?

Vermont’s forests are highly-altered: as a result of our land use history, non-native invasive pests and pathogens, climate change, and an array of other challenges and stressors, our forests are generally young, simple and degraded, missing many critical habitats, features and functions as they head into an uncertain future. As we consider what it means to care for forests at this moment in time, it is clear that radical action is needed to protect their biodiversity and their ecological integrity, and to help them build resilience and adaptability as they prepare for the pervasive influence of global change.

Ecological forestry is a reimagined vision of forest management – one that seeks to manage forests “like they manage themselves.” Ecological forestry is regenerative in nature, using forest management to emulate natural disturbances and natural processes, to help forests become more diverse, complex and resilient and even to make Vermont’s young, simple forests more like old growth forests. It does so while also providing local, renewable resources – wood – which have global biodiversity and human-rights benefits.

Ethan will talk about what ecological forestry is, what it looks like, and why it is so crucial at this moment in time.

As the Chittenden County Forester for the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, Ethan Tapper advises private landowners, municipalities, conservation organizations, foresters and loggers on the responsible stewardship of forestland, administers Vermont’s Use Value Appraisal (or “Current Use”) program in the County, and manages over 4,500 acres of Community Forests. He writes a monthly column for 11 newspapers and a quarterly column in Northern Woodlands magazine, maintains a YouTube channel, and leads public events throughout New England which are attended by thousands of people each year. Ethan is the Northeast-Midwest State Foresters Alliance’s 2021 CFM Forester of the Year, the 2021 recipient of the Vermont American Tree Farm System’s Education and Outreach Award, 2020 recipient of Vermont Coverts’ James B. Engle Award, and the 2022 recipient of the Vermont Urban and Community Forestry Program’s Vermont Tree Steward Award. Learn more about Ethan’s work at:


October 19, 2023
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Event Category:


Big Picture Theater
44 Carroll Road
Waitsfield, 05673
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