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Skip Navigation LinksSimcoe County > Departments > Forestry > Resources for Landowners

Resources for Landowners

The Forestry Department maintains and manages the forest health and forest operations within the Simcoe County Forest and does not offer private land consultation. 

Stewardship of private land forests is the responsibility of the private landowner who can find assistance from numerous sources including the resources and links below. 

 

 

ReforestationReforestation<p><span></span>The County of Simcoe does not provide tree planting services directly to residents, however funds are provided to reduce the cost of reforestation programs which are delivered by area partners.  Available funds are focused upon increasing tree cover in high priority areas such as marginal farmlands and along stream corridors; as such the subsidy level varies depending upon the type of land to be planted and the environmental benefit provided.<br><br>Interested landowners should <a href="http://www.conservation-ontario.on.ca/about-us/conservation-authorities/ca-contact-list" target="_blank">contact their local Conservation Authority</a> or stewardship association directly to determine eligibility and program details:<br></p><ul><li><a href="http://www.nvca.on.ca/" target="_blank">Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority</a></li><li><a href="http://www.lsrca.on.ca/" target="_blank">Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority</a></li><li><a href="http://www.forestsontario.ca/" target="_blank">Forests Ontario</a></li><li><a href="http://www.severnsound.ca/Pages/Home.aspx" target="_blank">Severn Sound Environmental Association</a></li></ul>
Woodlot ManagementWoodlot Management<p>County Forest staff manage County Forest lands and do not provide private land forestry.  Landowners are encouraged to contact a forestry professional to assist with making forest management decisions.  </p><p>Many landowners may be able to get a tax incentive on forested properties through the Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program (MFTIP).</p><p>Please see the links below for more information:</p><p> <a title="link to Forests Ontario website" href="http://www.forestsontario.ca/" target="_blank">Forests Ontario</a> <br>Information about tree planting and woodlot management</p><p> <a title="link to Ontario Professional Foresters Association Website" href="http://www.opfa.ca/node/1" target="_blank">Ontario Professional Foresters Association</a> <br>A professional forester can offer a wide range of services from tree planting to harvesting.  </p><p></p><p> <a title="link to website of Certified Ontario Tree Markers" href="http://www.ontariotreemarkers.ca/?__utma=1.398770311.1411744637.1416241005.1416329070.4&__utmb=1.6.10.1416329070&__utmc=1&__utmx=-&__utmz=1.1416329070.4.3.utmcsr=beta.simcoe.ca%7cutmccn=%28referral%29%7cutmcmd=referral%7cutmcct=/Forestry/Pages/ashborer.aspx&__utmv=1.cab%7c1=tag_visitor_type=external=1&__utmk=18012601" target="_blank">Certified Ontario Tree Markers</a><br>Certified Tree Markers are certified through the province to follow tree marking prescriptions prepared by a Professional Forester prior to harvest operations</p><p> <a title="link to information about the Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program" href="http://www.ontariowoodlot.com/information/mftip/mftip-program" target="_blank">Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program</a><br>Forest properties in Ontario greater than 4 hectares (approximately 10 acres) can be elegible for a reduction in property taxes through this program.</p><p> <a title="link to International Society of Aboriculture" href="http://www.isa-arbor.com/" target="_blank">International Society of Aboriculture</a> <br>Certified arbourists are trained to care for the health of individual trees</p><p> <a title="link to the Ontario Woodlot Association website" href="http://www.ontariowoodlot.com/" target="_blank">Ontario Woodlot Association </a>    <br>Organization of private forest landowners</p><p> <a title="link to the Landowner Resource Centre" href="http://www.ontariowoodlot.com/publications" target="_blank">Resource Centre </a> <br>Fact sheets and publications for landowners and land managers<br></p><p> <br> </p>
Invasive PlantsInvasive Plants<p>Most are familiar with the threats posed to our environment by exotic invaders such as zebra mussels, purple loose strife, and more recently giant hogweed, however there are other invasive exotic species which are seriously threatening our County Forests.  In fact, many resource professionals and naturalists consider invasive exotic species to be the most serious threat to the long-term integrity and biodiversity of woodlands in Southern Ontario.</p><p>Of particular concern locally are four non-native species: garlic mustard, dog-strangling vine, Manitoba maple, and common or glossy buckthorn.  Unfortunately, the increasing level of recreational use is leading to additional accidental introductions.  To help us control the spread, PLEASE:<br></p><ul><li>stay on the trails;</li><li>clean your boots or tires before and after visiting the County Forests;</li><li>never discard plants or yard waste in the County Forests;</li><li>learn to identify invasive plants and advise forestry staff if you are aware of an introduction.</li></ul><h4>To report invasive species please visit:</h4><p><a href="http://www.eddmaps.org/Ontario/" target="_blank">Early Detection and Distribution Mapping System</a></p><p><a href="http://www.invadingspecies.com/report/" target="_blank">Invading Species Hotline</a></p><h4>For more information please visit:</h4><p><a href="http://www.ontarioinvasiveplants.ca/" target="_blank">Ontario Invasive Plant Council</a><br></p><p><a href="http://www.invasivespeciescentre.ca/" target="_blank">Invasive Species Centre</a><br><br></p>
Emerald Ash BorerEmerald Ash Borer<p>​​The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) in an invasive insect originating from Asia.  It was first discovered in North America in the Detroit and Windsor area in 2002.  The insect infects and kills ash trees<span style="font-size:1em;">.  Since its introduction </span><span style="font-size:1em;">in 2002, it has </span><span style="font-size:1em;">sprea</span><span style="font-size:1em;">d</span><span style="font-size:1em;"> throughout much of</span><span style="font-size:1em;"> Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and parts of </span><span style="font-size:1em;">Manitoba.  EAB is also present in nearly all US states east of Colorado.  EAB has caused the </span><span style="font-size:1em;">death of tens of millions of trees in North America.</span></p><p>The pest was first discovered in southern Simcoe County in 2013.  By 2018, the insect was widespread throughout much of Simcoe County.  </p><h3> <span lang="EN-US">What does it do?</span></h3><p>The larvae of the Emerald Ash Borer feed on the living tissue below the bark of an ash tree called the cambium.  These feeding galleries disrupt the flow of nutrients and water within the tree causing crown die back, epicormic shoots, peeling bark and death in as little as 1-2 years.  The insect attacks and kills ash trees of all sizes and ages.  It kills 99% of trees which it infects. </p><h3> <span lang="EN-US">Pest Biology and Identification<img class="ms-rteImage-2 ms-rtePosition-2" alt="Emerald Ash Borer" src="/Forestry/PublishingImages/Emerald%20Ash%20Borer/EAB%20ID.jpg" style="margin:5px;width:176px;height:154px;" /></span></h3><p>The Emerald Ash borer is a wood boring beetle that is 8-14mm long (5/16" to 9/16 ").  It is bright metallic green with a coppery-reddish or purple colour to the abdomen.  </p><p>Adult beetles emerge from under the bark of ash trees from May to August.  After emergence the adults feed for approximately one week then<img class="ms-rtePosition-2 ms-rteImage-2" alt="Marking in wood from emerald ash borer" src="/Forestry/PublishingImages/Emerald%20Ash%20Borer/Feeding%20Galleries.jpg" style="margin:5px;width:150px;height:227px;" /> commence mating.  A female then lays 40-70 very small eggs in a crevice or fold in the bark of an ash tree.  The eggs hatch within 2 weeks and the new larvae bore into the tree where they feed on the cambium (living tissue underneath the bark).  The larvae feed under the bark producing serpentine or S-shaped feeding galleries until fall.  They then excavate a chamber in the bark or sapwood where they overwinter.  The larvae then pupate and emerge as adults the following spring by burrowing out of the tree and through the bark, leaving a distinct D-shaped exit hole.</p><h3> <span lang="EN-US">Privately Owned Trees: What Can I do?</span><span lang="EN-US">  </span><span lang="EN-US">  </span></h3><p>Most landowners will have two choices when considering the future of an Ash tree.  The tree can be given protection against the insect by treating with an insecticide.  Otherwise most trees not protected will eventually die. It is the responsibility landowners to manage trees on their own property.<img class="ms-rteImage-2 ms-rtePosition-2" alt="treeazin helping save tree" src="/Forestry/PublishingImages/Emerald%20Ash%20Borer/TreeAzin.jpg" style="margin:5px;" /></p><p>There are several products available to treat ash trees and increase survival.  TreeAzin is injected by a li​cen​sed applicator into the base of the tree on a 1 or 2 year cycle and can provide protection against tree mortality from the insect.  The pesticide is only effective on trees that are not yet infected or at early stages of infection from EAB.  Treating trees with an insecticide may be a financially sound option for landowners considering values including aesthetics, home heating and cooling, land values and privacy. </p><p>If trees are not treated to protect against the insect they can die fast and become hazardous.  If you think your tree is infected or would like to have it removed contact a tree care professional to discuss treatment or removal options.  Pre-emptive removals of trees that will die from EAB can be safer and more economical than the removal of dead trees that are not structurally sound.<br></p><p>See the links below for further information:</p><p> <a title="link to information to help identify ash trees" href="http://www.invasiveinsects.ca/eab/ashID_h.html" target="_blank">How do I identify an ash tree?</a></p><p> <a title="link to information about infested ash trees" href="http://www.invasiveinsects.ca/eab/detection.html" target="_blank">Signs a tree is infested</a>​<br></p><p> <a title="link to find a certified arbourist" href="http://www.isa-arbor.com/findanarborist/arboristsearch.aspx?utm_source=homepageclicks&utm_medium=homepagebox&utm_campaign=IAmA" target="_blank">List of Certified Arborists</a>​<br></p><p> <a title="link to information about TreeAzin" href="https://bioforest.ca/en/canada/product-details/treeazin-systemic-insecticide/" target="_blank">TreeAzin Insecticide</a></p><p> <a title="Link to a brochure with information about hiring a tree care professional" href="/Forestry/Documents/hiring%20tree%20care%20services%20brochure.pdf" target="_blank">Hiring a Tree Care Professional</a></p><h3 class="ms-rteElement-H3B"> <span lang="EN-US">Woodlot Owners or Landowners of Larger Properties</span></h3><p>Owners or managers of privately owned woodlands and larger properties containing ash trees are encouraged to contact a forestry professional​​​​.  There are options to mitigating damages and reduce financial and ecological losses. <br></p><p> <a title="link to a landowners guide to preparing for Emerald Ash Borer" href="/Forestry/Documents/woodlot-management-for-eab.pdf" target="_blank">Preparing for Emerald Ash Borer - A Landowners Guide</a></p><p> <a title="link to a list of forestry consultants" href="http://www.opfa.ca/consultants-list" target="_blank">Finding a Forestry Professional</a></p> <h3> <span lang="EN-US">Regulation and Disposal of Ash Materials</span></h3><p>Since the confirmation of Emerald Ash Borer within the County of Simcoe, the area has come under ministerial orders from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency regarding the movement of certain woody materials.</p><p>There are prohibitions and regulations restricting the movement of nursery stock, trees, logs, lumber, leaves, bark chips and wood chips of all ash species and regulations that restrict the movement of ALL firewood species.  </p><p>Regulated materials may not be moved out of a regulated area into a non-regulated area without a movement certificate issued by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.</p><p> <a title="link to information about buying and burning firewood" href="http://inspection.gc.ca/plants/forestry/firewood/eng/1330963478693/1330963579986" target="_blank">Why should I buy and burn firewood locally?</a></p><p> <a title="link to a map showing the current regulatede areas for Emerald Ash Borer in Canada" href="http://inspection.gc.ca/plants/plant-protection/insects/emerald-ash-borer/areas-regulated/eng/1347625322705/1367860339942" target="_blank">Emerald Ash Borer Regulated Area</a></p><h3> <span lang="EN-US">What is The County of Simcoe Doing?</span></h3><p>The County of Simcoe owns and manages over 33,000 acres of forest.  Since the mid 2000's forest managers have monitored the progression of EAB throughout Ontario.  When it became apparent that the insect would eventually spread into Simcoe County, forest management activities were modified to mitigate the loss of this tree species from the Simcoe County Forest landscape.  </p><p>The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) had monitored for the pest in Simcoe County from the mid 2000's until 2013.  Once the pest was found in Simcoe in 2013, the county became regulated for the pest and the CFIA no longer monitored its spread in Simcoe County.  In 2014, the county began its own program to monitor the spread of the insect and provide information to local municipalities and residents.  Monitoring continued until 2017 when EAB was found to be widespread throughout the county.<br></p><p>A strategic plan was prepared and approved by council in 2014 to provide information and options for Emerald Ash Borer Management to County and Municipal staff and to provide information for residents.<br></p><p>The Transportation and Engineering department is responsible for the maintenance of County Roads.  A preliminary survey of roadside hazardous ash trees has been completed and removals of hazardous trees are being completed as required.</p><p> <a href="/Forestry/Documents/EAB%20REPORT-FINAL_25Feb14.pdf">A Strategic Plan to Manage the Emerald Ash Borer in Simcoe County</a><br></p>
Gypsy MothGypsy Moth<p>​​​​​​​​​European Gypsy Moth (EGM) is a non – native invasive insect from Europe that was brought to North America in the 1860's. First established in Massachusetts, it had spread to Ontario by 1969.<br></p><p>EGM larvae (caterpillars) feeds on a wide range of deciduous and some coniferous trees, however a component of oak is key and is generally required to drive significant outbreaks. During the larval (feeding) stage of the lifecycle in late May and June, substantial defoliation of trees may occur during peak years. <br></p><p>Populations of this species are cyclical with population surges approximately every 7-10 years. <span><span><span><span>When populations rapidly rise, they are historically followed by a crash.  This population crash is due to mortality from a host specific virus or fungus.</span></span></span></span>  <span><span></span></span>  </p><p>An outbreak was observed in parts of Simcoe County in 2019 and particularly severe and widespread defoliation was evident in 2020.   The most noticeable impacts have been seen in Tiny, Penetanguishene, Midland, Tay and Adjala-Tosorontio with smaller impacts in many other areas within the county. <br></p><p>Simcoe County completed egg mass sampling in fall 2019 and again in fall of 2020 within several County Forests.  Egg mass surveys count the overwintering egg masses of the species to help forecast the population potential the following year.  Egg mass surveys in 2020 showed that population levels were increasing in some areas and decreasing in others.  The presence​​ of <span style="color:#202124;font-family:arial, sans-serif;">Nucleopolyhedrosis virus</span> (NPV) and/or Entomophaga maimaiga fungus were noted in most survey plots and insect mortality was noted.   However, it is anticipated that some areas will see moderate to severe defoliation in 2021.  2020 egg mass survey results are available here: <a href="/Forestry/Documents/EGM%202020%20Summary.pdf" target="_blank">SCF 202​0 Gypsy Moth Egg Mass Survey Results.</a><br></p><p>The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) has competed mapping showing areas with European Gypsy Moth defoliation in 2020.  The MNRF mapping illustrates a general outbreak across many areas of the province.  2020 mapping is available here: <a href="https://files.ontario.ca/mnrf-srb-gypsy-moth-map-en-2020-11-17.pdf" target="_blank">MNRF 2020 European Gypsy Moth Defoliation Map</a><span style="font-size:1em;">​</span></p><p><span style="font-size:1em;">Stress to defoliated trees will occur, and mortality to some deciduous trees may result after several successive years of defoliation. Severe defoliation of coniferous trees may result in mortality after just one season. However, as population levels typically collapse back to low densities within 1-3 years of outbreak, no substantive or long-lasting impacts to overall forest health has resulted historically.<br></span></p><p><span style="font-size:1em;">It is recognized that peak EGM outbreaks represent a significant nuisance factor to affected residents, and the potential for any tree mortality on private property is impactful and concerning to landowners.</span><span style="font-size:1em;">​  Maintaining healthy trees and forests is an important defense against Gypsy Moth.​</span></p><p><span style="font-size:1em;">If residents or landowners want to manage European Gypsy Moth impacts,  several resources are available below.</span></p><p><img alt="Gypsy Moth Population Chart.png" src="/Forestry/PublishingImages/gypsymoth/Gypsy%20Moth%20Population%20Chart.png" style="margin:5px;width:606px;" /> </p><p><span class="ms-rteFontSize-1 ms-rteStyle-References"><span class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-1-4" style="">(Source: MNRF,</span> <a href="https://files.ontario.ca/mnrf-foresthealthconditionsontario2018.pdf" target="_blank">https://files.ontario.ca/mnrf-foresthealthconditionsontario2018.pdf</a><span class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-1-4" style="">)</span></span></p><p>For further information, please visit:</p><p><a href="https://fyi.extension.wisc.edu/gypsymothinwisconsin/pest-management-2/management-guide-for-homeowners/" target="_blank">Homeowners Management Guide to European Gypsy Moth</a></p><p><a href="https://fyi.extension.wisc.edu/gypsymothinwisconsin/pest-management-2/management-guide-for-woodlot-owners/" target="_blank">Landowners Management Guide to European Gypsy Moth</a> </p><p><a href="https://www.ontario.ca/page/gypsy-moth" target="_blank">Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry - European Gypsy Moth</a></p><p>To contact a Certified Arborist or Professional Forster, please visit:</p><p><a href="https://www.treesaregood.org/findanarborist" target="_blank">International Society of Arboriculture​</a><br></p><p><a href="https://opfa.ca/contact-us/membership-directory/#%21directory" target="_blank">Ontario Profes​​​s​ional Foresters Association​</a>​<br><br><br></p>