NDA and QDMA Submit Comments in Support of National Forest Habitat Improvement Project in Virginia

September 14, 2020 | by National Deer Alliance

The National Deer Alliance (NDA) and Quality Deer Management Association (QDMA) recently submitted comments in support of a proposed project to create early successional and late open canopy conditions to provide a diversity of age classes for wildlife species in the Pedlar River North area of the George Washington National Forest in Amherst County, Virginia. One of our primary focus areas is wildlife habitat and habitat management, and the Glenwood and Pedlar Ranger District's proposed habitat improvement project falls squarely within this focus area.

We applaud the Glenwood and Pedlar Ranger District’s leadership and proactive approach to managing the Pedlar River North area of the National Forest System (NSF) in a manner consistent with the goals and objectives described in the Revised Land and Resource Management Plan George Washington National Forest (Forest Plan). NDA and QDMA fully support the Forest Service’s proposal to create early successional and late open canopy conditions to provide a diverse habitats for wildlife through timber harvest, timber stand improvement, prescribed fire and creation of open and edge habitat. Through our extensive work on deer and habitat management across North America, we know that the actions proposed by the District will benefit wild deer by enhancing the varying habitat requirements, critical habitat components and ecosystem preferences of the region’s fauna.

The Pedlar River North area’s white-tailed deer require varying habitat types and structures, and the proposal’s inclusion of wildlife habitat enhancement measures such as encouraging regeneration of forests, managing non-native species and the planting of both soft and hard mast trees will create these necessary habitat variations. We applaud the Glenwood and Pedlar Ranger District’s diligent and thoughtful work in drafting a proposal that greatly improves wildlife habitat in the Pedlar River North area. Further, we support the Glenwood and Pedlar Ranger District’s inclusion of hunters and other stakeholders in the forest management process.