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Our Position

PIF position on legislation, forest plans, environmental issues and other matters impacting forests and forest landowners

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          We need your help to save Wildcat Falls.  Read More


PIF position on Wildcat Falls Delich Land Exchange Project Ottawa National Forest

 View slide show images of the Wildcat Falls parcel being traded to a developer 

 View second slide show images of the Wildcat Falls parcel being traded 

 View photos from the Wildcat Falls tour April 1, 2012 and Ottawa National Forest contacts 

   Letter to Ottawa National Forest Subject: Notice of Appeal Delich Environmental Assessment March 21, 2011.  Read More

   Letter to Sue Spear, Ottawa National Forest Subject: Delich Environmental Assessment (EA) Comments.  Read More

   Appeal Reviewing Officer confirms original decision.   Read More

   Appeal Deciding Officer reverses original decision.   Read More

   Press Release May 2011: PIF prevails in Delich Land Exchange.   Read More

   October 26, 2011, Comments on Delich Land Exchange.   Read More

   Letter from David J. Zaber, President Habitat Education Center.   Read More

   November 17, 2011, Letter from Christopher J. Krupp, Staff Attorney Western Lands Project.  Read More

   Final appeal of Delich Land Exchange February 23, 2012.   Read More

      Ironwood Michigan Daily Globe Newspaper article March 30, 2012 concerning the Wildcat Falls: Page 1      Read More: Page 2

      Email from Steve Garske, Great Lakes Indian Fish & Wildlife Commission (GLIFWC) Botanist, April 1, 2012.    Read More

      Ironwood Michigan Daily Globe Newspaper article April 4, 2012 concerning the Wildcat Falls: Page 1      Read More: Page 2

   Appeal Reviewing Officer confirms original decision April 12, 2012.  Read More

   Appeal Deciding Officer confirms original decision.  Read More

   Joe Hovel comments on the Appeal Deciding Officer's decision.  Read More

   Complaint Case 2:12-cv-184 filed with U.S. District Court for Western District of Michigan April 26, 2012.  Read More

   Wildcat Falls land exchange challenged in federal court (Statement April 27, 2012).  Read More

   Photo of Wildcat Falls White Pine growth (some at least 36" dbh).   Read More

   Ironwood Michigan Daily Globe Newspaper article April 28, 2012 concerning the Wildcat Falls: Page 1      Read More: Page 2

   Opening Brief in Support of Motion for Summary Judgment (November 7, 2013).   Read More.

   Delich Land Exchange Update report (December 27, 2013).   Read More.

   Federal Defendant's Response in Opposition to PIF's motion for Summary Judgment (February 7, 2014).   Read More
   PIF files Wildcat Falls Reply Brief (March 17, 2014).   Read More.

   Federal Defendant hereby moves to strike in its entirety “Plaintiffs’ Submission of Appraisal (May 20, 2014).   Read More.

   Federal Defendant hereby moves to strike Plaintiffs’ untimely Declaration in its entirety (May 20, 2014)  Read More.

   Plaintiffs' response to defendants motion to strike appraisal excerpt from record (May 26, 2014).   Read More.  Exhibit A

   Plaintiffs' Objects to the Federal Defendant's Motion to Strike from Record the Excerpts of Appraisal of Federal Lands (June 6, 2014)Read More.  Exhibit B

   To all who have supported and donated to the Save Wildcat Falls Legal Fund (September 28, 2014)


Partners in Forestry Cooperative endorses the Pilgrim River Forest application under the Forest Legacy Program

As a supporting partner and the primary forest manager of the Pilgrim River Watershed Project since September of 2009 we are excited to witness the goals of the project come to fruition. With the adjoining community forest as a neighboring property the Forest Legacy conservation easement will go a long ways to suit the needs of a growing and active community deeply in need of maintaining open space for recreation, education and solitude.!  The Pilgrim Forest lands are covered by a growing and increasingly valuable timber resource, heavy to northern hardwoods including high quality sugar maple but also offering a wide diversity of other significant timber species. As non timber plant species also being important to the project goals, the Pilgrim Forest hosts the very nicest stands of Canada Yew we are aware of in the midwest.    Read more



PIF Supports the U. S Forest Service State of Wisconsin's Wild Waters Working Forest Legacy Project.  The Wild Waters Working Forest is centered in a landscape surrounded by the Nicolet National Forest, Forest, Florence and Marinette county land and over 80,000 acres of other working forest easements.  At over 9000 acres the Wild Waters Working Forest provides sustainable lumber production and outdoor public recreation in the area and supports diverse wildlife habitat. These lands are managed for high value northern hardwood saw lumber and veneer as well as other forest products.  The forests of the Wild Waters project directly impact 50 timber-related jobs.  Wood products procured from this sustainably managed forest are utilized by more than 15 local and regional mills and in turn supporting numerous other jobs.  Read More.

Pilgrim Watershed Project South Trail First Loop is Now Open  The trailhead is located on the logging road entrance on the north side of Boundary Road, 0.6 miles east of Superior Road and 1.4 miles west of Paradise Road.  Look  for the large green Pilgrim River Watershed Project sign.  There is good off-road parking.   You will be rewarded with many scenic vistas from high elevations overlooking the river, the ruins of an old log cabin, and a wide diversity of flora.  There are two large picnic tables, one at the trailhead and another at a river overlook.  Hiking the entire trail requires about 2 ½ hours.  However, there are opportunities for shorter distance walks.


PIF takes position on the budget proposal concerning the Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Fund.  Read More.

PIF Annual Meeting: Forestry Conference Discussion of Conservation Economics

Discussion covered the economic return of forest land ownership, the financial compensation of growing trees as an investment, long term conservation planning, the Land and Water Conservation Fund and Stewardship Fund necessary to mitigate forest land parcelization, tools for long term planning, tax considerations for protection and transfer of land and much more.



Listen to the various subjects discussed at the annual meeting


Introduction:  Local radio station WXPR interview of Joe Hovel and meeting discussion of the economic return of growing trees (John Schwarzmann).   Listen Here

Part two: Importance of the Land and Conservation Fund and Stewardship Fund (Richard Steffes and Matt Dallman).   Listen Here

Part Three: Tax Code Issues (Geary Searfoss).   Listen Here


PIF supports the U.S. Forest Service "Brule-St. Croix Legacy Forest" Project funding. This funding is important to allow the State to complete the second phase of this extraordinary opportunity to protect 67,285 acres of undeveloped forestland—the largest conservation effort in Wisconsin’s state history.  The first phase was completed in August, and Forest Legacy Program  funding will provide the necessary match to State funds to complete the second phase and secure a working forest easement on the remaining 22,667 acres. Read More.

Partners in Forestry Cooperative endorses the Pilgrim River Forest application under the Forest Legacy Program.   Read More

PIF Supports and agrees with Wisconsin Woodlands Owners Association letter to Dean Bortz at Outdoor News and all state legislators. Partners in Forestry believes the Forestry Mill Tax is vital for the health and conservation of Wisconsin's working forests, and has a proven record of benefits to citizens of our state. Click here to view the letter at the Wisconsin Woodlands website.


PIF supports and agrees with the Forest Stewards Guild Statement on Elimination of Wisconsin Forestry Mill Tax.   Partners in Forestry believes the Forestry Mill Tax is vital for the health and conservation of Wisconsin's working forests, and has a proven record of benefits to citizens of our state. We support and agree with the position our friends at the Forest Guild have taken. Please read their statement here. 

Letter to Members of the Joint Committee on Finance in Support of the Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Program   Partners in Forestry is a 16 year organization advocating for sustainable forest management. Our actions have brought several thousand acres into management in recent years, benefiting the forest industry and the health of these forests. We care deeply about the economic, social, environmental and intrinsic values of Wisconsin’s forest land and we act continuously on behalf of land owners and local economies.  Click here to read more on PIF Support for the Knowles-Nelson  Program.

The state is going backwards for the timber industry and sportsman.

The timber products industry and sportsmen should be extremely concerned with DNR land sales as directed by law under this political climate. Both have high interest in preventing parcelization. For example, the new owner of a recent DNR land sale near Boulder Junction (outside NHAL boundary) plans the following: clearcut mature pines, put up a storage unit facility, and sell one-acre lots. This is the final timber harvest on these 40 acres. Likewise the scattered 40s and 80s in St. Germain that are up for sale will, in a few years, be subdivided into small parcels for sale as home sites and the timber will never again be managed and sportsmen will never again have access. It really is sad.

Partners in Forestry participated in the 'Wild Life and Reconciliation Conference' at the Ho Chunk conference center in Baraboo, Wis. on July 16, 2017.

The following presentation on Forest Legacy and it's value to Wis. wildlife was written by Joe Hovel, with editing and slides prepared by Rachel Hovel Phd., with presentation by Dick Steffes. Click here for the presentation

Impacts of deer on northeastern forests and strategies for control. Deer have been shown to cause significant negative impacts to forest regeneration in northeastern forests. Chronic over-browsing reduces both plant and animal abundance, and these legacy effects can last long after deer numbers are reduced. Landowners should manage deer numbers on their property at levels the forest can sustain. Aggressive hunting programs, or in some cases deer damage permits, may be needed to lower deer numbers and impacts to acceptable levels. There is no quick and easy solution unless deer can be fenced out of regeneration areas, and this usually is not economically feasible. In many parts of NYS, if landowners do not manage deer, then successful forest regeneration of diverse hardwood trees is unlikely. Presented by Dr. Paul Curtis, Cornell University Department of Natural Resources. This is the presentation by Dr. Curtis.

Wisconsin’s Forest Legacy Program identifies and protects, through the use of conservation easements, environmentally important private forestlands threatened with conversion. Properties in the program stay under private ownership and management. Wisconsin's aim is to protect large blocks of forestland that are managed for the sustainable use of forest resources and that offer public recreation opportunities in order to preserve the integrity of the state’s forests.  Click here for a summary of the Upper Wisconsin River Legacy Forest Legacy program.  Any questions on this project can be directed to Joe Hovel at