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Forestry public input

Leafy green tree canopy is viewed from the forest floor

Forestry public input

Managing Michigan's forests

We want you to be involved in state forest planning - also known as our compartment review process. Our plans for the forest include harvesting timber, planting trees, prescribed burning and maintaining fields and open areas – activities that help to provide wildlife habitat, control invasive species and improve the overall health of the forest. You’re invited to look over proposals, view maps of the affected areas and provide feedback.

In addition to localized compartment reviews, a statewide forest action plan and state forest management plans also guide forest management activities. 

Sign up to receive email updates

Select "DNR News" to get email updates on forest management public input opportunities including compartment reviews and open houses. 

Image of state forest map application showing forest management areas

See plans for the state forests including prescribed burns, timber sales, tree planting and more. Information on plans under review is updated one month before the management unit open house. Check the schedule to learn when information will be posted. If you need assistance using the map, please email DNR-GIS@Michigan.gov.

To find compartment data, zoom in to your area of interest. As you zoom in, details will appear on the map including highlighted compartments under review. Click anywhere within the compartment and a pop-up screen will appear with more information, including a link to the compartment review presentation packet and the record of decision, once finalized.

View the state forest map

State forest public input process

State forest open houses

Each year, forest management recommendations are presented at open houses - informal sessions that give you the opportunity to speak with foresters, wildlife biologists and other resource professionals. Currently, all open houses are being hosted as comment periods with opportunities to contact unit managers. 

Use the map to find information on upcoming timber sales, tree thinnings, prescribed burns and other management activities. You can type in an address to find out what's planned nearby. The map highlights actions that will occur in two years. Current and past year information is also available in the map.

Compartment reviews: The final decision

Attend compartment review meetings to hear DNR professionals make final decisions for the future of the forest. Compartment reviews are currently being held in virtual formats.

If you can't make any of these meetings or if you require accommodations, contact us.

Ecological reference areas

Ecological reference areas are natural areas with special characteristics such as high-quality habitat and may be suitable or contain rare, threatened or endangered species. Plans are developed to protect and improve these areas to preserve these unique places, and are available for review seasonally. 

aerial view of woods and water in Hartwick Pines area

Appeals

The public may appeal planned forest management activities, called prescriptions, after the formal compartment review stage of the planning process, or in instances where major changes are made. This does not include emergency salvage cases from incidents like windstorms, or from preemptive forest health treatments. The appeal process is the final opportunity to influence a state forest prescription prior to implementation.

To submit an appeal, an individual or organization must first participate in the review process through treatment-specific comment at an open house or in writing before the formal compartment review. If the person appealing did not engage in the review process, an appeal may be dismissed.

Submit an appeal in writing to the Forest Resources Division Assistant Chief at DNR-Forestry@Michigan.gov within 45 calendar days following the compartment review record of decision posting or notice of change in prescription. The appeal must state how the decision fails to consider comments previously provided, or how it violates laws, regulations or policies.

The DNR will provide a decision to involved parties, including the basis for denying or granting an appeal.