An exceptional model of Dauerwald - Wisconsin's Menominee Indian Reservation. This forest has been managed in line with Dauerwald principles for almost 150 years.
Non industrial woodland owners.. it is with many of these land holdings that Dauerwald deserves to find its greatest consonance..
Dauerwald and Menominee
by Hans Schabel and Marshall Pecore Ecoforestry - Winter 1999
The promise of Dauerwald... a more productive, environmentally healthy and aesthetic forest than the traditional age-class forest. As a long-term commitment to natural forest management based on selective cutting for biologically rich forests, the Dauerwald amounts to a giant restoration project, undoing the liabilities of "traditional" forest management. The Dauerwald promises to become an economically viable, environmentally healthy and socially responsible form of sustainable forestry.
Dauerwald principles spelled out include abstention from clearcutting, reductions in chemical input, low-impact technology and natural regeneration of mixed, uneven aged forestry, preferably composed of indigenous species and provenance's. Dauerwald prescriptions are generally decentralized, i.e. flexible to account for local conditions.
A lengthy transition is needed to convert a traditionally managed forest into a Dauerwald. During this adjustment period, economic sacrifice appears inevitable. The harvest of quality timber may need to be deferred, administrative and management procedures modified and harvesting technology adjusted to the new realities. To achieve and eventually maintain a Dauerwald, frequent silvicultural interventions throughout the forest are called for, always in ways that eliminate the "lesser" tree to eventually provide permanence in stand, site and timber quality. In the long run, and considering all costs, including externalities, the Dauerwald claims higher profitability that the age-class forest.
By consistently removing the worst and leaving of the best trees, the quality of the Menominee timber has gradually improved, just as the Dauerwald is promising to do. Most important, the low impact logging by trained personnel in Menominee's mixed, all-aged forest, has not compromised the many service functions, to assure future generations of Menominee a healthy, vibrant resource.