Modelling the outcomes of different silvicultural approaches in the private native forests of north-eastern New South Wales
Jay, VA & Dillon, A in press, 'Modelling the outcomes of different silvicultural approaches in the private native forests of north-eastern New South Wales', Australian Forestry.
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Private native forests provide an important component of the log supply to local industry and a source of income for landowners in New South Wales (NSW). However, due to a history of high-grading, the estate in north-eastern NSW is in poor productive condition. In order to improve forest structure and productivity, various silvicultural techniques may be employed. In this study, the EUCAMIX forest model was used to compare three different silvicultural approaches and determine which provided the best silvicultural and economic outcome for mixed-species, mixed-age native forest stands in north-eastern NSW. The outcome for the entire estate in this area was also modelled. While high-grading leads to a long-term decline in forest values, it is a financially rational choice for landowners. Restorative silviculture produces better outcomes in the long term but the up-front costs and length of time to payback are likely to be a deterrent. Additional sources of revenue are therefore needed to incentivise landowners to engage in restorative silvicultural practices.