Monday, July 15, 2013

Fascinating Forestry

Forestry is still alive and well in New Zealand, for sure.  I covered it very briefly back in 2008 when I first visited this beautiful country: http://www.whereisholden.com/search?q=forestry

The following things I was told, and I didn't fully research due to limited internet access. Feel free to correct me in the comments below!

Notice anything strange about these trees?  They’re more or less in rows!

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Access roads abound:
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And some areas look clear cut, as they were just harvested & replanted:
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Difference foresters planting & harvesting cycles but up against each other:
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The North American pines are harvested at a height of about 30 meters. This level of growth requires roughly 30 years here in New Zealand, as opposed to 70 years in North America!  The trees grow so well (and so quickly) due to ideal conditions: generally rich soils (much of NZ is has a recent volcanic history), plenty of rain, and warm ground (active thermal activity) which tricks the trees into thinking its continually springtime!

Trees are raised in two ways: unpruned for pulp/papers usage, and pruned all but the top branches which keeps the tall trees perfectly straight, and without knots for timber/lumber.
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There is active, thoughtful management to balance the forestry industry with the (almost wiped out) native forests/plants including some transfer of land ownership back to indigenous people's.

 

Logging trucks are wide loads, sometimes three trailers long, though never crossing the middle line.
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Don’t get mixed up and go to the wrong place!
cheese forestry

The trucks take the logs to either a mill, or more commonly, a port, where the logs are loaded onto ships for countries with cheaper labor.  The ports are amazing.  In the top right of this photo, above the ship being loaded, check out the pile of sawdust!
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Same port (Napier), but enlarged to show the logs at the bottom:
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Another port (Picton):
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The trucks that haul these logs are amazing:
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A friend is a dairy farmer and has his own tree mill to cut logs for furniture and building!  Awesome home-made contraption!  Here it’s shown with a small sawblade that can cut horizontally, though it can fit larger blades, and cut in both vertical and horizontal.  Water cooled blades, etc.  Manual control of cutter.
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