Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Silviculture BMP Courtesy Checks

Solutions to Better Water

Join In, Make a Difference

The use of Silviculture Best Management Practices (BMPs) benefits the forest landowner and forestry in many ways.

BMPs protect our natural water resources from degradation and sedimentation that can sometimes occur because of erosion during and immediately after forest operations.

Silviculture BMPs maintain shelter and food for aquatic organisms and wildlife species.

The use of BMPs during normal ongoing forestry operations exempts landowners from the costly process of acquiring permits; however, a permit is required for culvert placement and road construction when crossing streams and wetlands.

Silviculture BMPs are required in all forestry operations adjacent to waterbodies and wetlands by federal, state and local authorities through reference or regulatory statute.

Set a Higher Standard, Use the BMP Manual

Florida's Silviculture Best Management Practices Program is one of the South's first quasi-regulatory environmental protection programs addressing forestry activities. The program was established in the mid-1970s in response to mandates given each state under the 1972 Federal Clean Water Act.

The Florida Forest Service has served as lead agency in the development, implementation and monitoring of Silviculture BMPs statewide. Florida's first Silviculture BMP Manual [ Adobe PDF Document 23.35 MB ] was published in 1979, providing written forest management guidelines for landowners. A system of monitoring was also established and the Florida Forest Service conducted its first BMP Compliance Survey in 1981, showing 93 percent compliance on over 100 sites.

Don't Get Left Behind. Stay Informed with a BMP Courtesy Check

The Florida Forest Service provides a voluntary silviculture BMP Courtesy Check. The on-site inspection will evaluate present or past (within a two-year period) forestry operations such as timber harvesting, site preparation, forest roads, stream crossings, etc. To obtain additional information about Florida's Silviculture Best Management Practices:

  • Request a BMP Courtesy Check.
  • Request a free copy of Florida's Silviculture Best Management Practices Manual.
  • Request information for forestry BMP Workshops for loggers, landowners and natural resource managers. These one- to two-day workshops are conducted throughout Florida and consist of a morning classroom session with a variety of speakers who have practical field experience in using BMPs.

Best Management Practices (BMP) Foresters Protect Water Quality

Florida's Silviculture BMP Program is one of the South's first to address forest operation activities. The Florida Forest Service's BMP Foresters are strategically located throughout the state to provide information, recommendations and technical assistance for proper BMP implementation prior to, during and after forestry operations.

Contact Us

 To help keep forestry growing and Florida water resources clean, contact a BMP Forester for assistance:

Florida Forest Service
Hydrology Section
(850) 681-5820
Jeff.Vowell@FreshFromFlorida.com or Roy.Lima@FreshFromFlorida.com