July 2017
Pennsylvania Forestry Association
News You Can Use
July is a time to celebrate our country's independence and to enjoy the beauty in Penn's Woods! In this month's edition, PFA celebrates the life of PA forest friend Paul Lyskava, learn about opportunities to engage with Penn's Woods this fall, and so much more! Don't forget to follow us on Facebook. Click the link at the bottom of the newsletter to connect!
Paul Lyskava
 It is with a great degree of regret and heavy hearts that we advise PFA Members that Paul Lyskava has passed. Our sincerest of prayers and condolences are extended to his wife Kathleen and their son, Sean.

PFA President Gene Odato noted, “"Paul was always there for the Bureau of Forestry when we needed input on revisions to an old program or when we were rolling out a new program. The forest industry was well served by Paul’s service on the Forest Stewardship and Forest Legacy Committees. We would hash out details, even down to one word, trying to design a policy or program that industry and government could agree on. We always developed a better product because of Paul’s expertise and commitment to the resource.”  

According to PFA VP Richard Lewis, “Paul was a good friend, a caring father and husband and an exemplary association executive for the Pennsylvania forestry community. I will especially miss my bird hunting trips with him. “

Since 2002, Paul Lyskava served as the Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Forest Products Association.  His educational efforts with Pennsylvania House and Senate members kept them abreast of the concerns of their forest product constituents and of the PA Forestry Community in general. For the four years prior to his affiliation with PFPA, Paul served as the Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Hardwoods Development Council, a division of the Commonwealth’s Department of Agriculture. Before that, Paul held a position with the Pennsylvania Rural Electric Association as an Economic Development Representative. Paul received his BA from the University of Notre Dame and continued his post-graduate education at PSU attaining a Masters of Public Administration.

In 2015, Paul was the recipient of the Pennsylvania Forestry Association’s Joseph T. Rothrock Conservationist of the Year Award, which recognizes actions and service that contribute to the continued conservation of Pennsylvania’s forest resources in the spirit of PFA’s founder, Joseph T. Rothrock. 

Nowhere was Paul’s passion deeper than with our youth, and during his tenure at the PA Hardwoods Development Council, Paul helped to develop and implement the Pennsylvania Wood Mobile, a traveling educational exhibit that he continued to campaign for and contribute to when he assumed his role with PFPA. He also was a strong supporter of the Log A Load for Kids Program which raises thousands of dollars annually to help severely injured and very ill children in Pennsylvania’s Children’s Hospitals.

In parting PFA Members simply say, “Thank you for your years of service and commitment to the Pennsylvania forestry community. Rest in peace, our dear friend.”

Still Time To Submit Nominations For Forestry Awards!
Time is running out to apply/nominate candidates for the PFA awards that recognize individuals/organizations who are doing an outstanding job with forest conservation or forest education. PFA has an awards program that is looking for candidates for the Joseph Trimble Rothrock award and the R. Sandy Cochran award. Send your nominations to the PFA office at thepfa@paforestry.org or mail them to 116 Pine Street, 5th Floor, Harrisburg, PA  17101 marked to the Attention of Robb Piper & Jim Finley for consideration before August 31. These awards will be presented at PFA’s annual meeting in October. For details on the application process for either of these awards read more.


A statewide effort to build appreciation for forests, the people who own them, and the importance of tending them, the Walk in Penn’s Woods is a day with organized woods walks in each Pennsylvania county. Anticipated to become an annual event on the first Sunday in October, this inaugural Walk in Penn’s Woods day happens October 1, 2017.

The tours and walks are lining up. As of the end of June, we have almost 40 walks scheduled across the state. There will be open houses and guided walks in rural, urban, and suburban woods, state and national forests and parks, municipal watersheds, conserved areas, private lands and industry forests showcasing the multiple values and diverse uses of Pennsylvania’s priceless forest resources. You can find information about each walk, volunteer to hold one, or sign up to help with one on the Walk in Penn’s Woods website at www.walkinpennswoods.org.  Or download the volunteer form or press release here!


The PFA Outreach Committee conducted a Project Learning Tree/Walk In The Forest Workshop for approximately 20 forest landowners on Saturday, June 3rd at the Little Buffalo State Park office conference room. The Workshop facilitators were Jean Devlin, Matt Sampson, Julianne Schieffer, Linda Finley, Nancy Baker, Dave Twining, and Richard Lewis.

The workshop participants were enthusiastic and seemed to enjoy the educational training they received on PLT, and on conducting walks in the forest. Most of the workshop participants agreed to conduct a walk in their own forest/woods on the October 1st “Walk In Penn's Woods" day. Seven of the Workshop participants also joined PFA! Below is a photo of an exercise in “building a tree” with participants representing the various components that make up and support a tree’s growth.


On June 15th PFA Board Members field inspected Pennsylvania’s largest Swamp White Oak. This record Pennsylvania tree is located in the Bald Eagle State Park near Howard, PA.  This remarkable Pennsylvania “Big Tree” measures 73 inches in diameter (across) and 19 feet in circumference (around) at breast height


The following grant programs are being offered:
Lloyd Casey Memorial Fund – second round of grants
  • In honor of Lloyd Casey’s many contributions to forestry, a memorial fund was established by the Pennsylvania Forestry Association (PFA), the Allegheny Society of American Foresters (ANSAF), and the National Woodland Owners Association (NWOA). The purpose of the Fund is to provide assistance for educational programs for forest landowners, as well as for local government officials, tax consultants, realtors, and other interested individuals on specific topics contributing to sustainable forestry on private forestlands. Interested organizations or agencies are invited to submit proposals for forestry related projects. Applications for this round of grants for 2018 must be received in the Pennsylvania Forestry Association’s office by close of business on December 1, 2017. For application details, read more.

Wessel Seedling Fund – Henry Wessel Seedling Planting on PA State Forest Land
  • In honor of Henry Wessel’s many contributions to forestry, a memorial fund was established by the Pennsylvania Forestry Association (PFA). The purpose of the Fund is to provide assistance to plan and complete seedling planting projects on State Forest Land. Public agencies and non-profit organizations are invited to submit proposals for forest regeneration, forest replacement or forest diversity projects. The deadline for proposal submissions for the 2017 calendar year is September 1, 2017. Proposals for 2018 must reach the administrative office of the Pennsylvania Forestry Association by close of business on December 1, 2017. For application details read more .

DCNR TreeVitalize Grants
  • DCNR announced three funding categories – tree planting, urban riparian buffers, and community forestry management -  for this year’s applications for TreeVitalize grants designed to help restore tree cover across Pennsylvania. An applicant can seek a grant in all three categories but can only be awarded one grant per grant term.  Applications are being accepted through 4 p.m. Aug. 15, and must be submitted via email to Development and Grants Coordinator Jessica Cavey, c-jcavey@pa.gov. To apply for a grant or learn more about the application process, visit https://treepennsylvania.org/. For more information and a grant application, read the press release and application. 


HB 544 – Moul, Dan – Amends the act of February 2, 1966 (1965 P.L.1860, No.586), entitled "An act encouraging landowners to make land and water areas available to the public for recreational purposes by limiting liability in connection therewith, and repealing certain acts," further providing for liability for landowners to recreational users. (Read the legislation here). This bill will further protect landowners from risk when opening their land for recreational purposes. 

HB 544 was voted out of the House Tourism and Recreational Development Committee on a party-line vote with Democrats voting in the negative. The bill currently sits in the House Appropriations Committee where it awaits a vote, before being voted on by the entire House of Representatives. Then, the bill must pass through the same process in the Senate. 

HB 944 – Keller, Mark - Amends the Public School Code, in terms and courses of study, further providing for agricultural education and providing for Commission for Agricultural Education Excellence. (Read the legislation here). Versant Strategies was successful in including the word “forestry” in HB 944 which will provide a more efficient and effective delivery model of agricultural education in PA. Currently, school-based formal agricultural education reaches over 150 high schools and nearly 16,000 students. This win is a pivotal point for legislatively ensuring forestry education in high schools. 

HB 944 is currently in the Senate Agricultural and Rural Affairs Committee where it currently awaits a vote before moving through the legislative process in the Senate.

BAT RESCUE – Dave Twining

If you are fortunate (or unfortunate) enough to have a bat colony in your barn or outbuilding now is the time you can save hapless infants seen crawling or huddled on the building’s floor.  Small guano deposits are evidence that something is living up there.

These babies are four weeks old and have just failed their flying test.  If you are sympathetic to their plight, as most of us are, you can save them from other critters and a slow death by using cardboard to pick them up and place them on a wooden wall or ledge where they will think about their plight until nightfall, when bats become active.  Bats must be at an elevated posture for they cannot fly directly from the ground.  Ninety-nine percent of young bats will be gone by morning.

Bats cannot be safely handled by hand, and their 38 sharp teeth will support that claim.  Most are brown or little brown bats and will not exhibit white nose syndrome in the summer.  Why have bats?  They consume up to half their weight in insects each night and gestating moms eat a bounty equal to their weight; they love mosquitoes.  Let’s give bats a hand by relocating downed infants to locations they can fly from at night.



TF Committee Quarterly Meeting
Thursday, September 7, 2017   10:00-2:00
Sunset West Restaurant   Pleasant Gap, PA

2016 PA Tree Farmer of the Year Celebration
Saturday, October 7, 2017
Jim and Jan Kessler's 43 acre Tree Farm located in Susquehanna County

PATF Program Informational Meeting
Join us for the final " New Face of PA Tree Farm" meeting!
Tuesday, September 19, 2017    6:30-8:00
Cambria County   Ebensburg Borough Building   
300 West High Street   Ebensburg, PA   15931


The American Legion Post #239, National Wild Turkey Federation (Lykens Valley Longbeards Chapter), and the DCNR Bureau of Forestry will host an invasive plant identification and control workshop in Williamstown, PA. This program, titled “Invasive Weeds in the Woods” will begin at 6:00 PM Wednesday, July 12th, and run to approximately 8:30 PM. The group will be meeting at the American Legion Post #239, 123 W. Market St., Williamstown at 6:00 then carpooling to the field site for the workshop. This event is free and open to the public. Anyone interested in forest related topics is encouraged to attend.

The purpose of this seminar is to educate the public on invasive plant control. This program will feature discussion on why invasive plants pose a threat to plants and wildlife in our native forests. The seminar will also showcase several different treatment measures used to control these problematic plants. DCNR Foresters will be on hand to lead discussion and answer any questions related to forest management. For registration and more information call the Weiser State Forest Office at 570-875-6450 or use Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/weiser.forest. Please register by July 10th.

The Pennsylvania Forest Heritage Association runs a small museum at the old headquarters building of Caledonia State Park. Our Forest Heritage Discovery Center has displays on wildfire in Pennsylvania, the history of forestry in PA, fire towers and Smokey the Bear. It is open from noon to 5 on Saturdays and Sundays during the summer. We need volunteers to work those days. You can email us at info@paforestheritage.org or sign up on our website, http://paforestheritage.org/160. This is a great way to educate the public about the forests of Pennsylvania! Thank you.

In the news
 07-05-2017 Appalachian Trail Museum continues to tell the tale of America's Trail through its people
The Appalachian Trail Museum in Gardners recently inducted the seventh class of honorees into the Appalachian Trail Hall of Fame: the late Harlean James, Washington, D.C.; the late Charles Parry, Blacksburg, Va.; the late Mildred Norman "Peace Pilgrim" Ryder, Egg Harbor, N.J.; and the late... - Harrisburg Patriot-News


07-03-2017 A success now, Pa. elk herd has faced tough times
There’s a signed scenic elk highway tour. An Elk Country Visitors’ Center and established viewing sites on Winslow Hill just outside Benezette. There is an annual Elk Expo and the annual Elk hunt. “Elk are a huge economic engine for the region,” said Fred Straitiff, executive director of the PA Great Outdoors Visitors’... - Erie Times-News


06-29-2017 Ferguson Township Advises Residents of First Case of Oak Wilt in 2017
Ferguson Township is advising residents that the first case of oak wilt this year in the township was confirmed. The disease can quickly kill oak trees and spread to nearby trees. The confirmed case was on Cherry Ridge Road in Park Forest Village, where last year two trees were removed after being infected.... - State College News


06-28-2017 DCNR: Wolf Administration Announces TreeVitalize Grants Available
  (Press Release)


06-20-2017 Parks, forests and recreation: Essential to Pennsylvania’s health and economy
Seventy-three percent of adults surveyed across Pennsylvania and 68 percent of primary care clinic visitors in Hershey, Pa., consider parks, trails, and open space to be a critical part of the health care system, according to a recent Penn State study. Yet these same parks, forests, trails and open spaces are threatened by the... - Lock Haven Express


06-20-2017 Pa. Supreme Court rules state forest gas royalty transfers unconstitutional
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that royalties from oil and gas leases on state forest land must be dedicated to conservation of the Commonwealth’s public natural resources, not used for general budgetary purposes. Article 1, Section 27 of the Constitution, known as the Environmental... - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


06-19-2017 Pests causing more damage than expected to Allegheny forest
With insect pests are causing more damage than expected to valuable black cherry trees and other species in the Allegheny National Forest in Pennsylvania, more tree planting and other measures in several areas are being proposed... - AP


06-18-2017 Moths munching forest at higher rate
Forest insect pests — especially the cherry scallop shell moth and fall webworm — are taking bigger-than-expected bites out of valuable black cherry trees and other tree species in the Allegheny National Forest. In response to the greater-than-anticipated tree defoliation, mortality and... - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
The Pennsylvania Foresty Association | 1( 800) 835-8065 | thePFA@paforestry.org | www.paforestry.org