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Canaan refuge drops plan to use commercial logging for habitat management

By RICK STEELHAMMER

Charleston Gazette-Mail

The Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge, in Tucker County, spans 16,653 acres.
(U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service photo)

CANAAN VALLEY, W.Va. — A plan to commercially log more than 1,600 acres of the Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge to achieve plant and wildlife habitat improvement goals has been dropped.

The plan — announced to the public in August — was initially scheduled to begin this winter on Middle Ridge, off the refuge’s A-Frame Road. It called for commercially harvesting 1,600 acres of northern hardwood forest in 30- to 40-acre annual increments, and repeating the process in 40-year cycles.

The plan also called for an additional 1,600 acres of timber to be cut, using both in-house and commercial contract timbering, to create mixed-age forest along the perimeters of northern hardwood forest stands.

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