Private lands in Florida provide a wide variety of services that benefit landowners and society, including recreational opportunities, economic activity, clean air, groundwater recharge, fish and wildlife habitat, carbon sequestration, water filtration, and improved quality of life. The owners, or stewards, of these lands have diverse goals and objectives for their properties, which frequently include some combination of agriculture, forestry and wildlife habitat management and conservation.
The Florida Forest Service, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service and University of Florida Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation and School of Forest Resources and Conservation, along with a many of other agencies and organizations, have been supporting the management and conservation efforts of private landowners for many years. These agencies and organizations provide support to landowners in the way of technical and financial assistance, developing resource management and conservation plans, and disseminating information through newsletters, websites, workshops, field days, and other means.
In order to more successfully deliver consistent and effective information and better cater to the diversity of land ownerships and management objectives across the state, these natural resource agencies and organizations are working together on a new initiative, the Florida Land Steward Partnership. Partner agencies and organizations are collaborating more closely to develop and provide information and technical assistance that helps enhance the natural resource management capabilities of landowners. This includes the production and statewide distribution of a quarterly newsletter, a yearly calendar, and other printed materials. The next issue of The Florida Forest Steward newsletter will be the inaugural issue of the Florida Land Steward. It will have a new look but will continue to provide the information and resources you have come to expect such as the regular timber price update, events calendar and feature articles on the most current and relevant issues pertaining to private lands and conservation. Program partners are also working closely together to coordinate workshops, tours, field days, and other trainings. In addition, a Florida Land Steward website has been developed and is now online. This site serves as a centralized source of information on land and natural resource management. Learn more about the Florida Land Steward partnership and our collective resources for landowners and resource professionals at http://www.flsteward.org/.