Rooted in Research
October 2021 Rooted in Research Webinar
Family Forest Landowners: Insights from the National Woodland Owner Survey (NWOS)
Wednesday, Oct 6, 2021 12:30 – 1:30 PM EDT
Jesse Caputo, Research Forester, USDA Forest Service Northern Research Station
Individuals, families, and trusts constitute the largest group of forest landowners in the United States, collectively owning 39% of the nation’s forestland. This diverse ownership group owns and manages their land for a multitude of objectives – for recreation, for beauty, as a private place to live, for conservation of nature, and for production of timber and other natural resources. In order to better understand the goals, motivations, intentions, and behaviors of this ownership group, the National Woodland Owner Survey (NWOS) – a product of the Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program – surveys private forest landowners on an annual basis. In this presentation, we will examine what the NWOS has revealed about family forest ownerships (FFOs). In addition to providing some basic population-level estimates about FFOs and their land, we will briefly examine two projects looking at family landowners in greater depth – one looking at FFO mortality and land turnover, and another looking at the effect of absentee ownership on landowner behavior. Finally, we will briefly discuss some future research directions.