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LibbyMt.com > News > July 2011 > Students learn about forest resources


Forestry techniques. Photo by Russ Gautreaux.
Forestry techniques
Forester Jim Benedict below discussing forestry, important tree species and tree planting techniques with students

Firefighting. Photo by Russ Gautreaux.
Firefighting
Firefighter Jason Harrington looks on as 5th graders apply their new skills using the bladder bags for firefighting.

Fish ID. Photo by Russ Gautreaux.
Fish ID
Jared Lampton with FWP (Fish Wildlife and Parks) discusses fish identification with the 5th grade students.
Students learn about forest resources
July 25, 2011

Each year members of the Montana Society of American Foresters and the Kootenai National Forest volunteer to take Libby and Troy 4th and/or 4th grade students on a field trip to broaden their knowledge about natural resources and forestry. The 5th grade woods tour is close to its 60th year running and members from the local Montana Society of American Foresters chapter have worked jointly with the U.S. Forest Service to provide this outdoor education experience for students. The goal for the 5th grade tour is to get kids involved with hands-on projects in the forest and to teach them where their natural resources come from.

The goal for the 5th grade tour is to get kids involved with hands-on projects in the forest and to teach them where their natural resources come from. The forest provides many resources, not just timber products, but recreation, huckleberrying, clean water, hunting, mining and fishing opportunities for all.

The 5th grade tour for the Libby Middle school students was May 27th. Students came out to Timberlane Campground, braving the rain.

Tour leader for Libby was April Rainey, who works to put together a program each year that provides a variety of different exposures for the students. "There are too many kids and adults these days that go to the store and purchase everything they need and donít have a clue where the ingredients come from. Our goal is to try and educate these students that everything we use and enjoy in our daily life has to come from the earth and itís either mined, logged or grown and it can be done in a sustainable manner."

The forest provides many resources, not just timber products, but recreation, huckleberrying, clean water, hunting, mining and fishing opportunities for all. Students were very surprised to find out that there are wood products in ketchup, ice-cream, nail polish, toothpaste and rayon fabric, to name a few. There are well over 5000 different uses from trees and the list is constantly growing.

Russ Gautreaux, Certified Silviculturist with the Three Rivers Ranger District of the Kootenai National Forest said, "The awesome thing about trees is that they are 100 % renewable, reusable and recyclable clean product. This is what we try to teach the kids. Using trees and managing the forest for our resource needs in a sustainable manner is a good thing!"

Photos courtesy Russ Gautreax



Fish Station. Photo by Russ Gautreaux.
Fish Station
Students ask Tom Ostrowski questions

Bees in the forest. Photo by Russ Gautreaux.
Bees in the forest
Angie Mclaury from Mclauryís Apiaries shares the importance of bees and their role in the forest.

Marshmallows. Photo by Russ Gautreaux.
Marshmallows
Marshmallows Of course it isnít all work, students got to enjoy a campfire with marshmallows and weenie roasting at lunch!

LibbyMt.com > News > July 2011 > Students learn about forest resources
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