The Delaware Forest Service works to minimize damage from wildland fire through prevention and suppression activities. We provide staff and equipment at our Blackbird and Redden offices to help firefighters control wildfires. We also loan wildland fire suppression tools (backpack water tanks, hand tools, etc.) to volunteer fire companies to assist their suppression efforts. Our entire staff provides educational (Smokey Bear) programs for first-grade students as well as programs at various public events and fire company open houses. Our Forest Fire Supervisor also works with the Delaware Fire School, fire companies, and the U.S. Forest Service to train Delaware firefighters in wildland fire suppression techniques.
Email: Henry Poole
Delaware Wildland Fire Program
Are you interested in participating in an adventure of a lifetime? Would you like to help protect human lives, property and precious natural resources during a national crisis? Do you have the mental fortitude, physical stamina and work flexibility to spend 14 days on a fireline far from home? Check out the Wildland Fire Crew webpage.
Forest Health Monitoring (Diseases and Pests)
The Delaware Forest Service strives to ensure that Delaware's rural and urban forests are vigorous and as free from pests as possible. Our foresters diagnose forest pest problems and recommend treatments to landowners and homeowners. Our Forest Health Specialist monitors forest pest populations through annual aerial surveys and a statewide network of permanent plots to help detect trends in the long-term health of our forests.
In October of 2006, the Delaware Forest Service issued a comprehensive report on the health and sustainability of Delaware's forests. While the report finds the state's forests generally in good health, Delaware's trees are being lost to development at an increasing pace. Additionally, Delaware's forests are also increasingly threatened by invasive insects and diseases. The next forest health report will be released in Fall of 2010.
Our forests are continuously threatened by a variety of harmful pests. Early detection is key to keeping these pests under control. You can help us keep our forests healthy by reporting any sign of the pests listed below:
Watershed Protection/Logging Regulation
The Delaware Forest Service strives to protect water quality in Delaware through its Erosion and Sediment Program. Our foresters assist loggers and landowners through site visits and educational programs to help ensure forest management activities follow Best Management Practices (BMPs), and thus comply with the Forest Practices Erosion and Sedimentation Law (Title 3, Chapter 10, Subchapter VI). Operators submit a permit prior to commencing forest management activities, and our staff reviews the site during the operation. If you are considering a timber harvest, please contact your local Delaware Forest Service office for a permit.
In addition, the Delaware Forest Service administers the Delaware Seed Tree Law (Title 3, Chapter 10, Subchapter V), which was passed due to the long-term decrease in pine and yellow-poplar forests. It requires landowners to reforest all harvested sites, ten acres or more, that contained at least twenty-five percent pine and/or yellow-poplar unless the site will be developed or cleared for agriculture. Information regarding the Seed Tree Law is also included on the timber harvest permit. In addition to enforcing this law, our foresters also help landowners meet its requirements by supervising reforestation activities.
Email: Sam Topper
The Delaware Forest Service offers Smokey Bear programs each October to all of Delaware's first-grade classes upon request to help prevent wildfires. In addition, Smokey Bear makes appearances at special events promoting fire safety (fire company open houses, parades, safety fairs, etc.) Due to federal licensing arrangements, Smokey Bear is not permitted to appear at special events in which fire safety is NOT a primary message.
Email: Ashley Peebles