Becoming a Tree FarmerBenefits of ForestryForestry StandardsGlossary

accredited third party assessors
A natural resource professional who has completed ATFS required training for third party assessors and is contracted or employed by an International Accreditation Forum (IAF) accredited certification body.
adaptive management
A dynamic approach to forest management in which the effects of treatments and decisions are continually monitored and used to modify management on a continuing basis to ensure that objectives are being met (Helms et al, The Dictionary of Forestry, Society of American Foresters, 1998)
adverse regulatory actions
Written warning, citations or fines issued by law enforcement or regulatory bodies.
The variety and abundance of life forms, processes, functions and structures of plants, animals and other living organisms, including the relative complexity of species, communities, gene pools and ecosystems at spatial scales that range from local through regional to global (Helms et al, The Dictionary of Forestry, Society of American Foresters, 1998).
Labor complaints are those with formal documentation filed through the state’s fair labor practices board or similar body.
desired species
Those species of flora and fauna designated in the landowner’s management plan and not known to cause negative impacts on the local environment.
fair labor rules
Include federal, state and local labor legislation and international labor standards cited in Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification schemes (PEFC) Annex 3, Chapter 3.3.
forest owner
Landowner or designated representative such as, but not limited to, professional
resource manager, family member, trustee, etc.
forest product
Any raw material yielded by a forest. Generally defined in Forest Acts or Ordinances, and subdivided conventionally into major forest products, i.e. timber and fuelwood, and minor forest products, i.e. all other products including leaves, fruit, grass, fungi, resins, gums, animal parts, water, soil, gravel, stone and other minerals on forest land (F. C. Ford –Robertson, Terminology of Forest Science Technology, Practice, and Products, Society of American Foresters, 1971.
forest vitality
The health and sustainability of a forest.
group manager
The individual(s) designated by the Independently Managed Group organization to manage the administrative affairs of implementing and achieving the AFF Standards and Standard Operating Procedures for group programs (SOP-01) for an ATFS certified independently managed group program. Please refer to the ATFS Group Certification Process documentation.
high conservation value forests
Forests of outstanding and critical importance due to their environmental, social, biodiversity or landscape values. Due to the small scale and low-intensity of family forest operations, informal assessment of HCVF occurrence through consultation with experts or review of available and accessible information is appropriate.
integrated pest management
The maintenance of destructive agents, including insects, at tolerable levels by planned use of a variety of preventative, suppressive, or regulatory tactics and strategies that are ecologically and economically efficient and socially acceptable (Helms et al, The Dictionary of Forestry, Society of American Foresters, 1998). A pest control strategy that uses a variety of complementary strategies including: mechanical devices, physical devices, genetic, biological or cultural management and chemical management (US EPA).
invasive species
Non-native species whose introduction does or is likely to cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health (Executive Order 13112 (Feb. 3, 1999).
Entity that holds title to the property to be certified.
management plan
Documents that guide actions and that change in response to feedback and changed conditions, goals, objectives and policies. Management plans may incorporate several documents including, but not limited to, harvest plans, activity implementation schedules, permits, research, etc. For the purposes of the American Tree Farm System® eligible management plans, plan amendments may include letters, notes, and other forms of informal updates in addition to formal plan revisions.
Pesticides include chemicals commonly known as herbicides and insecticides.
prescribed fire
A fire ignited by management to meet specific objectives (Helms et al, The Dictionary of Forestry, Society of American Foresters, 1998).
qualified contractor
Forest contractors who have completed certification, licensing, recommended training and education programs offered in their respective states.
qualified natural resource professional
A person who by training and experience can make forest management recommendations. Examples include foresters, soil scientists, hydrologists, forest engineers, forest ecologists, fishery and wildlife biologists or technically trained specialists in such fields.
qualified Tree Farm inspector
–A natural resource professional who has completed ATFS required training for certifying forested properties and is eligible to inspect properties on behalf of ATFS. ATFS requires all trained inspectors meet approved eligibility requirements.
rare species 
A plant or animal or community that is vulnerable to extinction or elimination.
The extent of forest operations on the landscape/certified property.
special sites
Those areas offering unique historical, archaeological, cultural, geological, biological or ecological value. Special Sites include:

  • Historical, archaeological, cultural and ceremonial sites or features of importance to the
    forest owner;
  • Sites of importance to wildlife such as rookeries, refuges, fish spawning grounds, vernal
    ponds and shelters of hibernating animals;
  • Unique ecological communities like relic old-growth, springs, glades, savannas, fens and
    bogs; and
  • Geological features such as terminal moraines, cliffs and caves.
state forestry best management practice(s) (BMPs)
Forestry BMPs are generally accepted forest management guidelines that have been developed by state forestry agencies with broad public stakeholder input.
The capacity of forests, ranging from stands to eco-regions, to maintain their health, productivity, diversity and overall integrity, in the long run, in the context of human activity (Helms et al, The Dictionary of Forestry, Society of American Foresters, 1998).
sustainable forest management
The practice of meeting the forest resource needs and values of the present without compromising the similar capability of future generations (Helms et al, The Dictionary of Forestry, Society of American Foresters, 1998). Note – AFF’s Standards of Sustainability reflect criteria of sustainability based on the Montreal Process, 1993, and the Pan-European Operational- Level Guidelines (PEOLGs).
visual quality measures
–Modifications of forestry practices in consideration of public view, including timber sale layout, road and log landing locations, intersections with public roadways, distributing logging residue, tree retention, timing of operations and other factors relevant to the scale and location of the project.