Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture

SAF Chapter from SFASU painting bands around RCW cluster trees on Jones State Forest Feb 2018 for translocation project siteMembers of Stephen F. Austin State University’s student chapter of the Society of American Foresters recently collaborated with a number of partners, including Rotary International, the Texas A&M Forest Service and Trees For Houston, to promote conservation and urban tree health in Montgomery County.

“I applaud the students for helping make the conservation movement stronger in Montgomery County,” said John Warner, urban district forester for the Texas A&M Forest Service.

Forestry students Tristan Clayton, Chris Longman, Andre Saenz and Brian Smith planted a total of 50 trees and ten pollinator-specific flowering trees on the campus of Conroe ISD’s Runyan Elementary School. The students then moved on to W.G. Jones State Forest, one of the nation’s largest working urban forests, where they painted green bands on 20 red-cockaded woodpecker cavity trees and constructed 25 erosion control structures for use on the property.

For a number of years, the Texas A&M Forest Service and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department have worked diligently to implement forest management practices to ensure the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker thrives in the urban oasis of Jones State Forest. Warner explained the green bands painted by the SFA students will help biologists and the public support the conservation of the endangered avian species.

“It is a visual for maintaining a non-disruptive distance from the tree of at least 100 feet, as well as being a visual cue to everyone that this is an important habitat tree for the woodpecker,” Warner said.