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An overflow crowd of 150 people packed the Community Room at the Kilton Library in West Lebanon, N.H., last night to listen to representatives of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) describe expansion plans for the Silvio O. Conte Wildlife Refuge and to voice concerns with those plans.
On a perfect late-summer day, members of the NHTOA and dozens of friends fired their shotguns at soaring clay birds, enjoyed each other's company, had a great outdoor picnic, and in the process raised nearly $7,000 to benefit the Children's Hospital at Dartmouth (ChaD). The Log-A-Load Fun Shoot event, held at the Green Mountain Shooting Preserve in Effingham, N.H., on Saturday, August 27, 2016, was part of the national Log-a-Load for Kids program in which loggers and wood-supplying businesses raise money to support children's hospitals to provide medical care to kids in need.
This year's Fun Shoot was the second annual hosted by the NHTOA, and attendance reflected the enthusiasm for the event. A total 93 people, including families, participated this year, more than double the attendance at last year's first annual Fun Shoot.
"People who own timberland and who are in the forest products industry are outdoors-oriented by definition," said Jasen Stock, NHTOA executive director. "Shooting sports is a natural for them, and support for our sporting clays trap-shooting event is growing tremendously. The fact that the Fun Shoot benefits CHaD, one of the best children's hospitals in New England, also encourages great participation."
Shooters took aim at 50 sporting clays at 10 shooting stands at the Green Mountain facility. Trophies were awarded to the top five finishers for men and women. Sponsors supporting the Fun Shoot included: Wagner Forest Management Ltd., New England Mat, Farm Credit East, J.M. Champeau, Madison Lumber Mill, Manac Trailers, Pleasant River Lumber, QDMA First N.H. Chapter, Zambon Brothers Logging, Bear Country Powersports, Peters Logging, Engie - Pinetree Power, Tucker Mountain Maple, Chadwick Baross, Pine Tree Lumber, White Mountain Lumber, Eversource, Nortrax, Cersosimo Lumber, Cousineau, Freightliner, and G.H. Berlin Windward.
"This event has become established on the industry's calendar," said Ray Barthilaume of Wagner Forest Management Ltd., chairman of the New Hampshire Log-a-Load Committee. "It brings together industry and landowner members in an activity that many of us love to do anyway, so doing it to benefit CHaD was just icing on the cake."
ABOVE: Rachel Eames, a member of the QDMA First N.H. Chapter team, was the high-point scorer among women participants in the Fun Shoot.
New Hampshire is the second-most forested state in the nation, with 84 percent of the state’s land mass covered by timberland.
76 percent of New Hampshire’s forests are privately owned.
Just over half of New Hampshire’s forests are northern hardwood trees. Softwood trees such as Spruce, White and Red Pine make up 20 percent, and the remainder of the state’s forests are composed of Aspen/Birch and other miscellaneous species (e.g. Hemlock).
New Hampshire’s forests are growing. Currently, forest growth exceeds harvest by 49 percent.
According to the U.S. Forest Service, growth is expected to exceed harvest through 2023 (the extent of their projection).
Approximately 3.3 million tons of wood is harvested every year in New Hampshire (72 percent is low-grade wood for papermaking or energy – biomass).
The forest products industry:
- Employs approximately 6,139 individuals
- Produces an annual payroll exceeding $242 million.
- Total annual value of the forest products economy output = $1.39 billion
- Forestry, logging, and timber trucking employment = 1,433; payroll = $83.5 million.
- Sawmills employment = 1,996; payroll = $62 million.
- Paper mills employment = 1,100; payroll = $61 million.
- Secondary wood products manufacturing (furniture and related) employment = 1,140; payroll = $36 million.
- Wood energy power plants employment = 470
- Employs approximately 10,800 individuals
- Total annual value of the forest-based recreation economy output = $1.4 billion
* data comes from The Economic importance of New Hampshire’s Forest-Based Economy 2013, published by the North East State Foresters Association, and Economic Contribution of the Logging Industry in New Hampshire (2014), prepared by Plymouth State University Center for Rural Partnerships