The planning stage of any VicForests’ operation is a detailed one, and can take up to one year to complete. Initial planning is completed by VicForests’ Tactical Planning Foresters, who concentrate on identification of threatened species, cultural and historical values, forest management and regulatory requirements and the production of detailed maps.
Stage One: Desktop and Field Assessments
VicForests’ Tactical Planning Foresters will first conduct a computer-based analysis on an area that may be able to be harvested. This assessment checks for values that have previously been identified and mapped in a particular area.
These values may include things such as streams, gullies, historical or cultural sites of significance, numerous flora and fauna species, threatened habitat such as for the Leadbeater’s Possum , and other important environmental features.
The next step is to visit the proposed harvest area, which is called a ‘coupe’. In Forestry a 'coupe' is the proposed area that is planned for operations.
Our Tactical Planning Foresters will visit the site and walk the area to check for the presence of anything the computer-based assessment may not have picked up. During this visit, they will concentrate on; accessibility to the area and road requirements; tree species, size and height; potential harvest area (coupe size); and, any values present in the area.
This is also an important stage in biodiversity planning and management. During a field visit, our Tactical Planning Foresters will often identify special values that may not have shown up on the mapping in the desktop phase.