All posts by Ethan Erdmann

Selective Logging causes long-term changes to forest structure

Original Story by Rhett A. Butler, (February 18, 2015)

Logging in Gabon.

Recent research has showed the ecological changes of selective logging in African tropical forests.  The paper goes over the idea that the practice of selective logging contributes to the growth of weeds and vines reducing plant diversity and diminishing carbon storage. 

Rainforest in Gabon.

Data was collected on more than 500 plots in Sierra Leone, Ghana, Cameroon, and Gabon that compared several traits across selectively-logged, and secondary forests.  The findings showed that even low-intensity logging causes sustained ecological changes to African forests.  Check out the article below for more info and let us know what you think.

CITATION: Roberto Cazzolla Gatti, Simona Castaldi, Jeremy A. Lindsell, David A. Coomes, Marco Marchetti, Mauro Maesano, Arianna Di Paola, Francesco Paparella, Riccardo Valentini. The impact of selective logging and clearcutting on forest structure, tree diversity and above-ground biomass of African tropical forests. Ecological Research January 2015, Volume 30, Issue 1, pp 119-132 


New National Monuments

President Obama has announced that he is designating three new national monuments to permanently protect sites unique to our Nation’s extraordinary history and natural heritage.  Apparently this upsets the GOP, but hey more cool places for us to visit and take our families too, right?

FACT: President Obama has protected more acres of public lands and waters through the Antiquities Act than any other administration at 16 national monuments and over 1 million acres of federally protected public land.

The three new national monuments are:

The Pullman National Monument


This monument will preserve and highlight America’s first planned industrial town and a site that tells important stories about the social dynamics of the industrial revolution, of American opportunity and discrimination, and of the rise of labor unions and the struggle for civil rights and economic opportunity for African Americans and other minorities. Photo courtesy of Office of State Historic Sites, Illinois Historic Preservation Agency.


Browns Canyon National Monument in Colorado



Will protect a stunning section of Colorado’s upper Arkansas river Valley. Located in Chaffee County near the town of Salida, Colorado, the 21,586-acre monument features rugged granite cliffs, colorful rock outcroppings, and mountain vistas that are home to diversity of plants and wildlife, including bighorn sheep and golden eagles. In addition to supporting a vibrant outdoor recreation economy, the designation will protect the critical watershed and honor existing water rights and uses. Photo by Bob Wick, U.S. Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management.

Honouliuli National Monument in Hawaii


Permanently protects a site where Japanese American citizens, resident immigrants, and prisoners of war were held captive during World War II. Located on the island of Oahu, the monument will help tell the difficult story of the internment camp’s impact on the Japanese American community and the fragility of civil rights during times of conflict. Photo by R.H. Lodge, courtesy Hawaii’s Plantation Village.

Apart from the three new monuments President Obama also designated over 350,000 acres of the San Gabriel Mountains in California, established the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument (roughly 500,00 acres) in New Mexico, and expanded to nearly 500,000 square miles the sanctuary near remote Pacific Islands.


Adventure Journal – how many more Natioanl Monuments will Obama Create?

The White House – remarks by President Obama for the new monuments

The White House – Every Kid in a Park


Every Kid in a Park

Every Kid in a Park

You can thank Obama for this one.  Starting September of this year, the Every Kid in a Park Initiative will grant every fourth-grader in the nation will receive an “Every Kid in a Park” pass that is good for free admission to all of America’s federal lands and waters — for them and their families — for the entire year of 2015-2016.

Even the National Park Foundation is expanding its program to award transportation grants for kids to visit parks, lands, and waters.  The President has also requested new funding in his FY 2016 Budget to support youth education programs and to support transportation for school outings to parks for students from low-income areas.

If you are interested in the Every Kid in a Park program you can pledge at the National Park Foundation’s website to receive news and updates: Sign the Pledge

Source: Let’s Get Every Kid in a Park

Forestry Products Lab Tour and Grill Out

Madison and Stevens Point at FPL

The University of Wisconsin-Madison Forestry Club and the University of Wisconsin- Steven’s Point Forestry Club took a tour of the Forest Products Laboratory in Madison, WI.  Both clubs were shown the extensive Forest Products Lab Library (FPL Library) that houses more than 100,000 specimens and samples of tree species and usage.  The tour also included these areas of focus within the research facility:

  • Durability and Wood Protection Research
  • Forest Biopolymer Science and Engineering
  • Fiber and Chemical Analysis Research
  • Engineering Properties of Wood – Wood Based Materials and Structures
  • Paper Test Laboratory
  • And so much more!

After the tour, both clubs took a trip out to Vilas Park to enjoy some good spring weather and some grilled food.  (Will have photos of the grill out up soon…)

We hope to have more opportunities like this in the future where both Forestry Clubs can come together and learn something new in this profession.

Check out Steven’s Point Forestry Club!!! They are pretty cool…

If you are also interested in the Forest Products Laboratory and would like to learn more please visit their website and sign up for a tour. You can also contact with the following information:

Forest Products Laboratory
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Madison, WI 53726
Phone: (608) 231-9200
Fax: (608) 231-9592 Email

Forest Products Lab Website:



Website Update for 2015!!


Hey everyone,

My name is Ethan Erdmann the new Tech Director for the Forestry Club.  You may have been seeing some drastic changes for the website over the past day or so, no worries, this is just me (haha). Joking aside,  I’m doing some pretty major upgrades to the website for this semester and have some crazy goals to be met.  If you are visiting the site for the first time I really hope you enjoy the new look and take a look around to see what the Forestry Club and the Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology have to offer here at UW-Madison. 

For those who are returning, and I hope you find the overall design much more appealing than what was here before.  I am gladly taking any comments and feedback for the site.  So hit that Contact Link under Contact Us to leave a message.  If for some reason it isn’t working, you can contact me at the following address to report the issue:


I hope everyone is having an awesome start to this semester and are excited for a new semester for the Forestry Club. More content will be up soon to keep your learning urges at bay.