Wednesday, 15 May 2002
Largest Landowner in Southern Maine Certified
Hancock Land Company, manager of 22,000 acres in southern Maine, recently joined the FSC system of responsibly managed forests. The National Wildlife Federation, a partner of the Rainforest Alliance’s SmartWood Program, facilitated the certification.
The sixth generation company is one of southern Maine’s largest landowners. The company manages its land with a low intensity harvest schedule to provide stability and guarantee white pine timber to its three sawmills.
Hancock Land Company has partnered with local and national land trusts through conservation easements. This has allowed Hancock to expand its acreage while guaranteeing healthy forests in an area facing rapid development. In October of 2000, Hancock entered into a conservation easement agreement with The Nature Conservancy and the State of Maine to preserve 3,200 acres of contiguous forest in the Jugtown Plains around Songo Lake. The easement protects 269 acres of rare pitch pine habitat, home to black bear, ovenbird, and moose. Hancock has partnered with the Trust for Public Land and the State of Maine to manage Mt. Blue State Park for timber production, recreation, and ecological value.
Hancock’s management style is self-defined as “Ecological Forestry" or the maintenance of ecological patterns and processes that ensure an ecosystem capable of a continuous flow of forest products by guarding against timber shortfall, fluctuating markets, insect outbreak, and climate change. Management objectives include tree structure and species diversity, minimal chemical use, natural regeneration silviculture, and protection of unique natural areas.
FSC has over 2 million acres of certified forestland in Maine, and over 70 million around the world. For more information on this certification, visit www.hancockland.com orwww.smartwood.org/reports/index.html.