Publication Details

America's family forest owners

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Butler, Brett J.; Leatherberry, Earl C.

Year Published



Journal of Forestry. 102(7):4-9.


The number of family forest owners in the conterminous United States increased from 9.3 million in 1993 to 10.3 million in 2003, and these owners now control 42% of the nation's forestland. The reasons why people own forestland are diverse. Some of the more common ones are aesthetic enjoyment, the tract is part of a farm or homesite, and to pass the land on to heirs. Half of the family forest owners have harvested trees, but only 3% of them have a written forest-management plan. Trends in owners' ages and future land-use intentions suggest widescale transfers of family forestland in the near future.


Nonindustrial private forests; small-scale forestry; landowner survey; forest inventory; National Woodland Owner Survey


Butler, Brett J.; Leatherberry, Earl C. 2004. America''s family forest owners. Journal of Forestry. 102(7):4-9.

Last updated on: August 22, 2006