Vienna Woods Unit Management Plan
The Vienna Woods Unit Management Plan (UMP) consists of Stone Barn State Forest and Fish Creek State Forest and several small pieces of Detached Parcels of Forest Preserve lands. These lands are located in the Oneida County towns of Annsville, Camden and Vienna.
Stone Barn State Forest
Stone Barn State Forest consists of 621 acres located just north of Oneida Lake and just east of the Oneida County Line. It is mostly flat ground and encompasses parts of five protected wetlands, two unnamed protected streams and the majority of a 24-acre pond.
As in many other state forests, this area was open farmland when it was purchased by the State. Most of the acreage was planted with tree seedlings that are now full grown trees. Species include white pine, red pine, Scotch pine and larch. A small amount of jack pine and white spruce were also planted. Some acreage was already mature natural hardwood or was allowed to develop into this cover type.
Fish Creek State Forest
Fish Creek State Forest consists of 678 acres located just to the north of McConnellsville and southeast of Camden. It, too, is fairly flat. A small portion of one protected wetland, an unnamed protected stream and frontage along the West Branch of Fish Creek (also a protected stream) are included on this state forest.
This area also was mostly agricultural land prior to acquisition by the State. Species present today include red pine, white pine and Scotch pine. A small amount of pitch pine and jack pine were also planted. About half of this state forest is in natural hardwood with some red oak mixed throughout.
Detached Parcels of Forest Preserve
In the general vicinity of the two State Forests already mentioned are 11 parcels, totaling 888 acres, of land categorized as Detached Parcels of Forest Preserve. Three of these parcels (containing 248 acres) are actually under the jurisdiction of the Office of General Services. These lands are in the process of being transferred to DEC as Detached Parcels.
In the early 1900's there was a concerted effort in New York State to acquire land for public use. As time went on, different programs were developed to do this. As these programs were more clearly defined, lands were acquired with different funding sources to be utilized by the People of the State of New York for slightly different purposes.
Just prior to the formalization of the State Forest Program, small pieces of land were purchased. Any of these parcels that were located in a county that had lands that became part of the Forest Preserve (once the Blue Line was established), but outside the actual Blue Line, were declared Detached Parcels of Forest Preserve. As such, these lands can only be used for recreational purposes. Timber harvesting or removal of any forest products from these lands is prohibited. Any development (including roads) is also prohibited.
These parcels range in size from 24 acres to 166 acres and have varying levels of access. Most have good access adjacent to major roads. Two pieces have no public access. The character of these pieces of land is similar to the nearby State Forests, except that there are no tree plantations. Major cover types include northern hardwood and hemlock-northern hardwood.
How to Provide Input into the Management of this Unit:
The UMP process consists of several steps: create detailed maps of the unit; inventory the wildlife and natural resources found on the unit; map the current infrastructure and proposed new facilities; incorporate public input; and plan future management actions and public use.
A draft UMP has been prepared for this area and DEC is accepting comments. A public meeting on the draft UMP will be held Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Vienna Town Hall, 2083 NYS Route 49, North Bay, NY (next door to the post office). The first half hour will be an open house format to allow people to informally discuss the draft plan with DEC staff. At 7 p.m., there will be a brief presentation of the draft plan highlights. Following the presentation, the public will have an opportunity to comment on the plan.
Any person or group who would like to provide input or comments on the draft Unit Management Plan for this unit can mail Senior Forester Mary Kay Allen at NYSDEC, 225 North Main Street, Herkimer, NY, 13350 or email the Region 6 UMP mail box. Public. Public comments received by March 3, 2014 will be considered in finalizing of the plan.