Current issue: 54(2)
Farm forestry in northern Ostrobothnia has met different kinds of obstacles that decrease its profitability, some national, some local. One of the later is partitioning of land. The purpose of this investigation was to survey the division of farm land in the coastal municipalities of northern Ostrobothnia in Finland, where the conditions are among the most unfavourable in the country in this respect. The material used in the investigation was collected in a previous study about the structure of the farms in the area. First part of the paper summarises the history of partitioning of land in Finland.
The results show that division of the woodlots of a farm are in the coastal municipalities of northern Ostrobothnia very disadvantageous for forestry. The average distance of a woodlot to the farmhouse is 8.3 km, but there is a great variation between the municipalities, and the distance varies from 30 to 1.9 km. The form of the lots, as the long ribbon-like woodlots in the municipality of Liminka, complicates often practical forestry. In addition, the number of separate woodlots is high, in average 9.2 per farm.
The great distance of the woodlots from the main farms hinders the use of forests and diminishes the financial result of forestry. Unfavourable form of the woodlots posts similar hindrances to harvesting of timber and forest management as the long distances and high number of separate plots. The problem is heightened by the abundance of peatlands in relation to productive forest lands in the area.
The PDF includes a summary in German.
Based on literature this paper describes the natural afforestation of Finland that took place after the last ice age and the changes which have taken place during the last 10,000 years. The origin and development of the vegetation and trees are related to the changes in the edaphic and climatic factors. The first tree species to arrive in Finland were the primary colonizing species, birch and Scots pine. The appearance of Norway spruce dates back to about 5000 B.P. There have been great changes in the species composition of Finnish forests during the last several thousands of years but some 2,000–3,000 years ago the various species reached their present balance. The epoch of naural forests, which had lasted some 9,500 years, came to a conclusion, however, when man started to have a marked effect on the forest’s development 300–400 years ago.
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The aim of this paper was to study the nature of the relative areal differences in the Finnish forests in respect of timber yield, intensity of exploitation and stumpage prices. The yield index is the most inconsistent and the source of the greatest regional differences. The differences arise even in Southern Finland, as the yield in the South-West is only 80 % of that obtained in Eastern Häme. The areal variations in the wastage index are of the order of only 10 % at most, and the stumpage price index is relatively constant, remaining within the 10 % limit, as far north as the southern boundary of the province of Oulu.
Indices for the forest yield and final forest returns suggest that the further one goes in Finland the greater the discrepancy between the two, as a consequence of the increase in stumpage price differences. Thus, whereas the yield per hectare in North-Eastern Finland is about 20 % of that in Eastern Häme, the stumpage price is similarly only just over 50 % of that prevailing in the latter area. This, the resulting returns per hectare are only 10 % of those obtainable in the more southerly area. When the return per hectare for the Forestry Board District of Eastern Häme is represented by the index 100, one then obtains corresponding return indices of 21.0 for the Northern Ostrobothnia and Kainuu area, 13.0 for Lapland and 10.0 for North-Eastern Finland. Thus, it may be said that roughly 10 hectares of forest land in Lapland, 5 in Northern Ostrobothnia or Kainuu, or 2 in Northern Karelia or the coastal area of southern and central Ostrobothnia would be required to produce the same returns as 1 hectare in Eastern Häme. This represents an extremely wide range of variation within the borders of one country.
This work provides a clear and sufficiently accurate impression of the order of magnitude of the areal differences in returns from the Finnish forests, and may thus serve as an adequate basis for the taking of decisions in this field.
The PDF includes a summary in English.
The purpose of the present investigation was to study the extent of human interference with the forests of different epochs in the district of north Ostrobothnia in Northern Finland, and its effect on the condition of the forests.
The study revealed that the quantities of wood removed were not most detrimental to the condition of the forest; the regionally irregular loggings and the logging methods employed were the most harmful. The old forms of wood utilization, tar industry, shipbuilding, sawmill industry and timber exports, were characterized by timber selection. Public opinion considered it the only recognized cutting method long after the conditions had changed and silvicultural methods should have been used.
The spread and abandonment of selection cuttings are illustrated in the results of first National Forest Surveys in Finland. According to the first survey (1921–1924), nearly half of the loggings in the province of Oulu were based on selection, which spoiled and devastated 41% of the forests. In the 1930s one-fifth of the North Ostrobothnian forests were weakened by selection cuttings, in 1960s the figure was 6%. The article also summarises the extent of tar and pitch production, sawmill industry, shipbuilding and household wood consumption of wood in the area.
The PDF includes a summary in English