To be eligible for financial assistance through EQIP or WHIP, conservation practices need to be part of a forest management plan.
What is a forest management plan?
Essentially, a forest management plan is a road map for your forest land that will help guide your management decisions to reach your goals while protecting the health of your forest.
A forest management plan is a document that includes:
an inventory and map of the natural resources on your land.
your objectives for your land.
a defined schedule of activities (or conservation practices) that will help you meet your goals while protecting the health of the forest.
Examples of forest management plan activities might include timber harvesting, wildlife habitat development, and invasive species and erosion control.
To read a sample forest management plan developed by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), please visit our application materials and documents page.
How do I get a forest management plan?
If you need a forest management plan, NRCS funding may be available to help you hire a licensed forester to develop a plan for your land. Funds for forest management plans are only available through the EQIP program.
The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation is also offering reimbursement for obtaining forest stewardship plans through the Forest Stewardship Program.
What kinds of forest management plans are accepted by NRCS?
In Massachusetts, forest stewardship plans as well as most forest management, Chapter 61 and 61 A plans will fulfill this requirement.
All forest management plans will be reviewed individually by NRCS to ensure that conservation principles have been addressed to NRCS standards.
I'm a licensed forester and want to write forest management plans for NRCS conservation program participants. How do I get started?
You can become a certified Technical Service Provider (TSP). As a certified TSP, your name and contact information will be listed in the TSP registry. NRCS customers will be able to find you in this registry and may hire you to write forest management plans. NRCS is now encouraging licensed foresters to become certified TSPs in Massachusetts.