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spectr17
03-18-2008, 01:45 AM
Ruffed Grouse Society to join others during Arbor Day Celebration

3/18/08

The Appalachian Highlands Chapter of the Ruffed Grouse Society (RGS) has signed on as a co-sponsor of the April 4, 2008 Arbor Day Celebration aimed at promoting the planting of hardwood trees on mined lands in Appalachia.

Initiated by the Virginia representatives of the Appalachian Regional Reforestation Initiative (ARRI) other co-sponsors include, the Virginia Department of Forestry (VDOF), the American Chestnut Foundation, The Nature Conservancy, and Take Pride in America.

Upon learning of the project, Appalachian Highlands Chapter president Mike Giles, who works for the Department of Mines Minerals and Energy in Big Stone Gap Virginia -- a state regulatory agency that administers the coal surface mining laws in Virginia -- knew that this was a project the chapter needed to get involved with. ?The restoration of trees is extremely important everywhere, not only for the protection and food source it provides for wildlife, but for people as well. It is however of particular importance in areas of surface mine sites, inasmuch as it returns the mined areas to a productive postmining land use,? Giles said, adding that the chapter?s involvement will help in provide a meaningful outdoor experience for young people that emphasizes America's outdoor heritage.

The Arbor Day Celebration will take place on mined land that is being reforested according to guidelines promoted by ARRI. Following these guidelines, contractors have cleared the area of invasive species, applied soil amendments, and ripped the soil to lessen compaction. A planting contractor recently completed planting native hardwood species over the site. Once established, the new forest will provide wildlife habitat, improve water quality, sequester carbon, and mature into a valuable resource.

The project will include the planting of as American chestnut, northern red oak, yellow poplar, walnut, red maple, and green ash seedlings.

Along with the seedling, events will include tree-planting demonstrations, American chestnut discussions, a discussion of the forestry reclamation approach developed by ARRI and how to remove existing cultural, technical and regulatory barriers to reforestation.

Lunch and promotional materials will be provided to participants.

For more information contact Giles at 276-679-7424.


Media Contact:
Mike Giles ( 276) 679-7424