Collecting on Forest Service Lands - Policy Change
jtuttle at fiaaz.net
Tue Jul 28 16:51:23 EDT 1998
The U.S. Forest Service has recently standardized its position for
collecting insects on National Forest Service Lands. This is an
important development for all hobbyists since it allows for the
noncommercial collection of insects on all Forest Service land (WITH
SOME RESTRICTIONS - SEE BELOW) and eliminates the confusing, and often
inconsistent, process of site by site approval that previously existed.
In a Forest Service Memo dated May 15, 1998 entitled "Noncommercial
Collection of Insects on National Forest System Lands" the noncommercial
collection of insects by small groups or individuals in pursuit of
personal interest are now universally classified as a recreation
activity which does not require special use authorization. THIS DOES NOT
ELIMINATE THE NEED TO OBEY ALL OTHER LOCAL, STATE, AND FEDERAL LAWS
WHICH APPLY TO THE SPECIFIC INSECTS BEING COLLECTED, OR ACCESS TO
RESTRICTED AREAS WITHIN THE INDIVIDUAL FOREST SITES. It is suggested
that you make contact with the local ranger station to identify closed
or restricted areas, listed insect and plant species, and inform them of
your planned collecting activities.
This policy change was developed after consideration of a letter
written by Dr. Fred Stehr of Michigan State University. A copy of his
letter, in its entirety, appeared in the Winter issue (#5) of the "News
of the Lepidopterists' Society". The amended policy, under the signature
of the Deputy Chief of the National Forest System, was directed to Eric
J. Metzler, the Immediate Past President of the Lepidopterists' Society.
The implementation of this policy change shows a "good-faith" effort of
all parties involved, and the National Forest Service, in particular,
should be commended.
James P. Tuttle
President, Lepidopterists' Society
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