Born in 1887, Kenneth Dupee Swan, more commonly known as K.D. Swann, introduced Americans to public lands in the West. The U.S. Forest Service hired Swan in 1911 as a forest assistant in Missoula, Montana. With his interest in forest management and ability for storytelling through photography, Swan captured the grand scale and splendor of the National Forest System as no one had before.
Below are just a few of the 300,000 images he captured during his 36 years with the Forest Service. To learn more about his role and see more images, check out “From Balopticons to iPhones: Picturing and Pitching National Forests” in the Winter/Spring 2015 issues of Your National Forests magazine .
Visit the Forest Service Northern Region Flickr page for more K.D. Swan photos.
What better time to witness animal tracking than in a fresh coat of snow? This winter, consider introducing your kids to tracking in the woods.
Check out our Kids and Nature story, “Hop, Scurry, or Stride” in the Winter/Spring 2015 issue of Your National Forests magazine for tips and ideas to experience winter tracking.
For additional ideas and images and tracks check out these resources online:
Silver Glen Springs is a magical place on the Ocala National Forest. With crystal-clear water and a safe harbor from the large and windy Lake George, visitors enjoy boating, swimming, wildlife and bird watching, and fishing. Manatees use the Springs as a warm water refugia in the winter, and alligators and turtles are frequently seen patrolling the shallows.
The Ocala National Forest is home to one of the National Forest Foundation’s 14 Treasured Landscapes, Unforgettable Experiences restoration sites . As part of our work there, we convened a collaborative group that has for the first time brought together local landowners, private boating businesses, recreationists, conservation interests, and the many government agencies that have a role in managing the Springs.
Over the past two years, the Silver Glen Springs Working Group has begun to make a mark: the group developed a brochure and new signs for visitors so they can help protect the natural and cultural resources in the area. The Working Group has also greatly improved governmental coordination in removing derelict boats that had anchored long-term in the Springs. In 2014, the Working Group developed a joint vision and management plan to guide the future of Silver Glen Springs.
Starting this winter, the NFF is partnering with the Sea to Shore Alliance to gather monitoring data on submerged aquatic vegetation. The data will provide information to the Forest Service about whether management actions are having the intended effect in protecting eelgrass and other native species.
This fall, Liz Agpaoa, Southern Regional Forester, recognized the Silver Glen Springs Working Group with a Natural Resources Leadership Group Award. We are excited about this award and believe it is well deserved, as group members have worked hard to overcome conflicts.
We thank all of the members of the Silver Glen Springs Working Group, as well as the Florida Gas Transmission Company and the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund for supporting our coordination of the collaborative efforts.
Did You Know
The NFF is on the verge of planting 6 million trees on our National Forests. That’s basically a tree for every resident of Maine, Vermont, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Washington DC.
With the help of forward-thinking American businesses, we make an outstanding difference for our National Forests. Tree-planting helps our forests by
- enhancing wildlife habitat,
- sequestering the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide,
- improving watersheds, and
- enhancing recreational experiences for the millions that visit our National Forests annually.
So how exactly does the program work?
We Find the Need
With tremendous reforestation need across the National Forest System, the U.S. Forest Service is always busy identifying new areas for reforestation. Forestry experts look at past and current forest conditions and decide how to best reforest the area.
Years ahead of planting trees, the Forest Service gathers seeds from native trees in the area. These seeds are sent to a Forest Service nursery, where they are grown for one to three years. When the project and seedlings are ready, they will be transferred back to the National Forest from where they came.
We Select Awesome Places
The NFF works closely with the Forest Service to find projects that are in high-priority areas and deliver the most conservation benefit. Depending on the interests and donation levels of our corporate partners, the NFF may be able to provide customized project opportunities.
More often than not, there is enough of a tree-planting need across the National Forest System to find a project that benefits both our corporate partner’s goals as well as the NFF’s goal of restoring our National Forests. Once a project is chosen, the donation is collected and the NFF commits to the project with the Forest Service.
We Get to Work!
Once the Forest Service receives the funds, they begin the project. Funding for the project extends beyond the cost of seedlings, and may include hiring a professional tree-planting contractor crew to plant trees or installing seedling protectors for the young trees. Our focus is to restore as many acres of our National Forests as possible, not to pad our bottom line. We put 85 cents of every dollar donated straight “into the ground”, maximizing results for our forests and our partners.
And, one more thing: we make sure it’s a success…
After seedlings are planted, the Forest Service and the NFF check back on the project area to measure the survival rates of seedlings. Unexpected weather events, herbivore browsing and insects and disease can all challenge the survival of newly planted trees. If survival rates fall lower than expected, the Forest Service may decide to re-plant the area.
With millions of acres of our National Forests that could benefit from reforestation, we invite mindful corporations to help the NFF plant more trees.