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Digger Log --
Stream Restoration


Promoting Healthy Forests
in the Acadian Forest Region

Isabelle Frenette
Fundy Model Forest
April 2001

orests are an important part of our lives. Canada is a "forest nation". Ten percent of all the forests in the world are in Canada. Canada is also the biggest exporter of forest products; in 1998 forests contributed over 18 billion dollars to our economy. New Brunswick is also very dependent upon its forests. Our forests provide habitat for wildlife; recreation for hunters, anglers and hikers; and they also provide employment. New Brunswick is one of the most forest dependent provinces in Canada (second only to British Columbia). We therefore place a lot of demands on our forests. How can we achieve a balance among all of these demands? How can we ensure healthy forests for now and for future generations? The Fundy Model Forest is a good place to start.

Forested Landscape in the Fundy Model Forest

(photo: FMF)

The Fundy Model Forest (FMF) covers 420,000 hectares (1 million acres) of Acadian forest in southern New Brunswick. The FMF is a working forest and includes towns and villages, Crown and private land, industrial freehold and Fundy National Park. The FMF borders the cities of Saint John, Fredericton and Moncton. Most of the land in the FMF is privately owned (63%), with 3500 woodlot owners in the area. Other landowners include Crown land (15%), J.D. Irving Limited (17%) and Fundy National Park (5%).

What is a model forest? A model forest is a place where different stakeholders (partners) work cooperatively to find new innovative ways to manage our forests more sustainably. The FMF is actually one of eleven model forests in Canada. Together, they are known as the Canadian Model Forest Network. The Canadian Forest Service (CFS), part of Natural Resources Canada, established the network in 1992. CFS is a principal partner in each model forest and provides primary funding.

The FMF represents a partnership between the federal and provincial governments, the forest industry, private woodlot and other landowners, scientific and educational associations, environment groups and recreational organizations. In all, this partnership is made up of 31 groups.

Since 1992, over 300 projects have been and continue to be carried out in the area of the FMF. These projects have dealt with subjects such as soil, water quality, wood supply, socio-economics, biodiversity, wildlife, education and recreation. For instance, we have studied the impacts of forest harvesting on small streams in the Hayward Brook Watershed in Petitcodiac. This multi-year study involved various partners of the FMF and has proven to be successful. It has allowed us to disseminate information gained to other groups in the area. Since 1997, we have provided curriculum material and workshops to elementary teachers in districts 2, 4, 6 and 8 in southern New Brunswick. On-going research is also trying to address landscape level management on private woodlots in the Washademoak Lake area. Researchers from the University of New Brunswick and the Southern New Brunswick Wood Cooperative are trying to work with landowners in the area to improve forest management.

(photo: FMF)
Tour Group- Summer 2000

Throughout the years, we have also provided a number of public tours. Every year, groups of interest, schools, local citizens and even international visitors have participated in these one-day tours where information and a visit to the different research project areas in the FMF are provided. Several model woodlots have served as venues for our public tours, including the Robinson Conservation Forest in Cambridge-Narrows. The Robinson Conservation Forest is a woodlot that contains three hiking trails with interpretive signs. The woodlot offers a hands-on unique learning experience to schools and any groups of interest.

The FMF has played an important role in developing ways to manage our forests more sustainably in southern New Brunswick. We are now in the last year of our second 5-year phase. We have received a strong mandate from our partners to continue into a third 5-year phase.

McLeod Model Woodlot in Penobsquis, NB

(photo: FMF)


For more information on the FMF or any of our projects contact:

Fundy Model Forest
181 Aiton Road Sussex, N.B.
E4G 2V5   Phone: 506- 432-2806
or 1-800-546-4838