The duties and scope of the DNR Division of Forestry have been enshrined in law since 1919. IC 14-23, Article 23 outlines these duties. For more information, consult IC-14-23, Article 23 at iga.IN.gov/legislative/laws/2015/ic/titles/014.
The Division of Forestry’s main duties include:
- The care, custody and control of the forest land owned by the state, excluding State Parks.
- Establish, operate and maintain nurseries for the production of trees to be used in reforestation.
- Investigate or experiment with regard to forestry questions.
- Purchase land and forests subject to the approval of the governor.
- Receive and accept, either by gift or devise, the fee or other estate in land or forests.
- Advise and cooperate in securing proper forest management of the state land.
- Examine private forest land with request by and paid for by the owner of the land with the purpose of advising the owner of the proper methods of forest management.
- Protect and conserve the timber, water resources, wildlife and topsoil in the forests owned and operated by the Division of Forestry for the equal enjoyment and guaranteed use of future generations.
- Using good husbandry to remove timber that has a substantial commercial value in a manner that benefits the growth of saplings and other trees; providing a revenue source to the state and counties; and providing local markets with an additional source of building material.
- Establish and equip a firefighting organization for the purpose of detecting, preventing, fighting and controlling fires in state forest land.
Section Mission Statements
State Forest Properties
To manage, protect and conserve the timber, water, wildlife, soil and related forest resources for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations, and to demonstrate proper forest management to Indiana landowners.
Private Forestland Management
Indiana’s Private Forestland Program promotes the stewardship of Indiana’s privately owned forests by providing forest management information and professional services to forest owners and others to insure forest benefits, both tangible and intangible, for present and future generations.
We work cooperatively with private woodland owners, citizens’ groups, governmental agencies and private-sector resource managers to accomplish on-the-ground forest management.
To grow and distribute to Indiana landowners high-quality plant materials for conservation plantings. Conservation plantings include plantings for timber, wildlife, windbreaks, soil and water protection, reclamation, carbon sequestering and education.
Forest Resources Information
Gather and provide the most current data available regarding the forest resource and forest products communities of Indiana as well as promote the forest resources and forest industry through a variety of publications, training and programs.
The DNR Division of Forestry Fire Management Program provides organizational, operational and technical leadership regarding wildland fire and prescribed burning. This leadership extends to all Division of Forestry land and may be extended to other DNR controlled lands and to all lands outside incorporated cities and towns.
Community and Urban Forestry
The Division's Community & Urban Forestry (CUF) Program provides statewide leadership to increase public awareness of the value of trees and associated natural resources in urban areas. We assist Indiana cities, towns and non-profits and encourage resident involvement in protecting, expanding and improving our community forests.
The Forestry Education Program facilitates and promotes objective education concerning the natural environment and its management. This is accomplished by preparing educators to deliver factual information and effective techniques to the audiences they reach.