Showers didn’t dampen the enthusiasm at the Tree Farm Forestry Field Day, held on Saturday, April 30, at the Western Illinois Youth Camp (WIYC). A large crowd enjoyed demonstrations of a brush mulching machine, operated by Littleton Logging, as well as fish shocking by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. The Lincoln Land Wood Turners were on hand to display their skills as well as displays by local woodworkers and carvers. The local chapter of Whitetails Unlimited awarded 15 scholarships to attend summer camp at the WIYC. A total of eight foresters and biologists were on hand to educate and answer questions about forestry management and methods. Tours included hardwood and pine plantings, log scaling, chainsaw maintenance and invasive control methods.
The 70-acre WIYC site was an ideal location for the field day with its many sheltered buildings and facilities. The site has an abundance of bush honeysuckle that is making it difficult for campers to utilize the wooded areas. The bush honeysuckle is also competing with native flora and degrading the woodlands by preventing regrowth of oaks, walnuts and other native trees. The WIYC is developing a forestry management plan that can be an example for proper stewardship of both the public and private woodlands.