• 55°

Forestry and wildlife fall bus tour set

In its 41st year, the Fall Forestry and Wildlife Bus Tour has become a fall tradition for many of Virginia’s outdoor enthusiasts and forest landowners — and one of the state’s four tours will be meeting in Dillwyn this year. Landowners and educators seeking to obtain research-based information in natural resources alongside the company of others with similar goals and interests will benefit from this field tour. Virginia Cooperative Extension and Virginia Tech, along with Virginia Department of Forestry and other partners in the forest industry and natural resources arena, direct this first class event.

“Speakers will be on hand including state and private agencies, private landowners and industry personnel,” officials said in a press release. “This year’s Central District event will be held in Buckingham County on Oct. 10 with registration beginning at 8 a.m. at First Baptist Church parking lot in Dillwyn with tour departure promptly at 8:30 a.m.”

Cost is $35 per person and $60 per couple. According to the release, registration deadline is 10 days prior to the event. Statewide, there are four tours posted at forestupdate.frec.vt.edu and to register online directly visit tinyurl.com/yafu2mjt.

“Participants will have an enjoyable time with a leisurely touring experience that will combine current forestry and wildlife research, all the while providing resources to help landowners in attaining their own land management objectives,” officials said in the release. “Specific tour stops will be as follows: Stop one — Visit the Virginia 2016 winning Kennedy Tree Farm since 1955 that began initially as 400 acres to now nearly 1,500 acres, two stops, one to witness site preparation for loblolly pine management, and a stop at the family farm retreat. Stop two — Visit Fulghum Fibres Gold Hill Mill near Dillwyn, where wood chips are moved by railroad to Covington for paperboard, corrugated containers and more worldwide by WestRock. Stop three — First Baptist Helping Hands- Catered Southern-style luncheon with all the fixings. The lunch will include science teacher and sponsor recognitions, door prizes, etc. Stop four — Visit Appomattox/Buckingham State Forest for stops four and five. Visit a Seed Orchard where the best pollen meets the cone. Here you will see a third cycle loblolly pine seed orchard.

In Virginia since the 1950s cuttings from wild trees of the best size and form were grafted onto rootstock to create first generation orchards. Crosses of the best of these trees, plus some new selections were used to start second generation orchards and so on. Stop five — Visit a hardwood research trial of side-by-side plots from a clean cut to timber stand improvement and a shelterwood cut, and witness the results since Feb. 2016. 4:30-4:45 p.m. — Depart for registration point, at 5 p.m. evaluations and adjourn. Tours will take place come rain or shine. Those in attendance are asked to dress appropriately for weather and with suitable footwear. Deadline is 10 working days prior to the event. For more information, contact Jason Fisher at (434) 476-2147 ext. 3389 or jasonf@vt.edu.