Chilton Natural Resources Council host tour

Those in attendance were transported in trailers pulled by tractors during the forestry tour on Monday. (Photos by Anthony Richards)

Those in attendance were transported in trailers pulled by tractors during the forestry tour on Monday. (Photos by Anthony Richards)

The Chilton Natural Resources Council hosted its Fall Landowner Forestry Tour on Monday and covered an array of topics from land maintenance to rules and regulations.

The tour was held on the property of Wade Connell in Clanton and included four stops throughout the property and ended with lunch and door prizes.

Mike Ford with Plantation Pipeline spoke about the petroleum pipeline that runs along the property.

According to Ford, a tanker truck would have to pass through the property every minute and a half to match the amount of gasoline, diesel and jet fuel is transported through the eight-inch pipe.

“That’s why pipelines are the most efficient way of running petroleum,” Ford said. “We know two months in advance where we are going to be running and at what time.”

Ford advised everyone in attendance to take the time to call and get an understanding of where the pipelines are located prior to digging and starting a project.

“They [pipelines] are like a snake, if you don’t mess with it, it won’t mess with you,” Ford said.

Taking the extra precaution was stressed by more than one speaker during the tour and remained the primary focus no matter what the topic was.

Jason McDade, Right of Way Specialist with Alabama Power, relayed the importance of giving the proper respect to the electricity that power lines possess.

“Right of ways are not typical and can change depending on the property they are placed on,” McDade said. “If your not sure of the laws associated with right of ways, don’t hesitate to call and get clarification.”

With hunting season about to begin, Brad Dunham talked about wildlife food plots and openings on private property.

Chris Jaworowski of the Extension Center shows off a constructed house for a wood duck.

Chris Jaworowski of the Extension Center shows off a constructed house for a wood duck.

First off the size of the opening should be adjusted due to the objectives that the land will be used for.

Ten percent of the land should be used for the opening if wildlife is the primary objective. However, 5 percent of the land is recommended if wildlife is the secondary objective.

Dunham also advised mixing up the type of crops that are grown and testing the soil before each crop is planted. A soil box to ship the soil can be found at the Extension Office.

Dana Stone informed of a native species of fungi pest known as Heterobasidion Root Disease that will not show above ground effects until two to three years down the road.

“You just have to remember as a land owner that you will never have zero pests,” said Brian Smith with the Alabama Forestry Commission. “The goal is to maintain it the best you can.”

The options of Hardwood management were discussed by Jim Jeter, who explained how the lumber market has changed, as options for hardwood products did not exist in the 1970s and 1980s.

“You couldn’t give them away,” Smith said. “Now you’ve got to get out of that pine mindset.”

Chris Jaworowski, with the extension office, gave some insight for any one interested in the possibility of duck hunting in a pond on their property.

He showed an example of a manmade birdhouse commonly used to attract wood ducks and provided some tips, such as making sure to have a removable cleaning tray for better access.

According to Jaworowski, the proper placement is one birdhouse for each acre of land that water covers.

The tour wrapped up with Smith giving an informative speech on boundary lines and firebreak maitenence.

“It doesn’t matter if you one acre or 100 acres, it helps for you and your neighbor to know where your boundaries are,” Smith said. “Marking the corners is key.”

Lunch was barbecue provided by Hickory Chip in Clanton and door prizes were offered up by several local businesses that help sponsor the tour.

 

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