Welcome to new members    Robert Leverett
   Jun 22, 2006 10:09 PDT 


   Several weeks back our membership climbed to 130. Then 4 people
dropped off the list and our membership stood at 126. Since then, 4 new
members have signed up. So, we are back up to 130. On behalf of Will
Blozan, Lee Frelich, and myself and of the membership at large, I would
like to welcome all of you. I won't go into the history of ENTS here.
Our superb website designed and maintained by our webmaster Ed Frank has
ample background information of ENTS. I invite each of your to explore
the website, if you haven't already done that. However, please feel free
to ask any questions you like and to participate fully along the lines
of your interests. We're all equal in the eyes of the trees.

I would like to point out that you have joined ENTS at a particularly
exciting time in our history. We have a number of important missions and
projects underway. One of the most important is a forming partnership
with the Great Smoky Mountains National Park GSMNP) to locate, document,
study, and treat the greatest of the surviving eastern hemlocks. Will
Blozan, the ENTS president, is busy as I write this communication
working to save a fine stand of Carolina hemlocks in western North
Carolinba on private property. There is no way to overstate the
importance of the hemlock treatment mission. You'll read lots of posts
on the adelgid problem.

   An ongoing mission of ENTS is to measure and document outstanding
trees and stands of trees in the East. The website discusses our
exacting measurement techniques, so I'll not elaborate here. But you'll
soon recognize that many of the posts to the ENTS list deal with the
tree measuring and stand documentation mission. It won't always be
apparent why we place so much emphasis on measurement accuracy, but
suffice it to say that ENTS is THE elite tree measuring organization in
the eastern United States. We are continuously pushing the technology
and we are anxious to train as many of our members as have interest in
measuring. We hold annual tree measuring workshops, often two, but
always one. Our traditional home for the main annual tree measuring
event, which is part of an annual ENTS rendezvous, is Mohawk Trail State
Forest in western Massachusetts. We also hold periodic tree measuring
workshops at Cook Forest State Park, PA. under the capable leadership of
Cook Forest State Park naturalist and educational director Dale
Luthringer. We plan to expand the number of locations at which we
conduct tree measuring workshops to include one or two sites in the
Southeast. The GSMNP will likely be one.

   Another significant ENTS mission is to measure and document important
big tree-tall tree sites in the East. We do something called Rucker
analysis. The process is explained on the website. It is with the site
documentation mission that we have our greatest need for new tree
measurers. There are large geographical areas that have no coverage at
all. Only a few areas get really good coverage. The best of all is
probably Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania team is superb. Dale Luthringer,
Scott Wade, Anthony Kelly, Carl Harting, and Ed Frank make up the A-Team
and illustrate what is possible to achieve with a few very good people.
New England and eastern New York also has a strong team. John Eichholz,
John Knuerr, Gary Beluzo, Susan Scott, Howard Stoner, Holly Post, and
yours truly make up this team. Thereafter, the ranks thin out. In the
central eastern region Darian Copiz stands by himself. In the Southeast,
Will Blozan, Jess Riddle, and Michael Davie make up the regulars. In the
central Mid-west, Tom Diggins is our sole representative, and in the
upper Mid-west, Lee Frelich and Paul Jost are holding down the fort for
a huge area. Don Bragg has the southwestern region of the eastern forest
hall to himself. You can see why we actively seek new measurers.

    A rather esoteric mission of ENTS is to volume model our largest
eastern trees. This is a pursuit only for the absolutely obsessed. It is
not an undertaking for anyone who is disinclined toward mathematics. As
we complete the modelings, we will be able to state authoritatively
which are our largest trees by volume. As you might imagine, there is a
touch of sport in this mission.

    In addition to our quantitatively driven members, ENTS has
photographers, writers, musicians, herbalists, landscape architects,
gardners, etc. with different interests in trees. The common link is a
love of trees, especially large and artistic looking ones. We are
especially fortunate to have published authors in ENTS.

    The science side of ENTS has a slate of PhDs with impressive
accomplishments. As best I can determine we have at least 15 PhDs on the
list. So, there is always someone around to field a technical question
and give an authoritative answer, even in other fields. We have
meteorologists and geologists in ENTS.

     As for other missions and projects, thanks to Don Bragg's
leadership, we will soon see our first edition of The Bulletin of the
Eastern Native Tree Society - an e-journal that will be available to all
as a download. Don plans to have our first edition out in July.

      A team of us is working on a book on tree measuring, which will
spawn the discipline of dendromorphometry. That term is a tongue
twister, but appropriate. Dendromorphometry is a discipline that is
distinct from forest mensuaration. We should complete the book in 9
months to a year.

      The last weekend in October, we will have our annual ENTS
rendezvous in western Massachusetts. We'll have lectures at Holyoke
Community College, a tree measuring workshop at Mohawk Trail State
Forest, and an ENTS concert with live music, poetry, etc. at the
Federated Church of Charlemont, MA., two tree climbs by Will Blozan,
and a field trip just to enjoy the trees It is all absolutely free.

     Regardless of tree interest, the key in ENTS is to participate. We
are all equal in the eyes of the trees. Well, I've rambled enough, so
with this introduction, I turn ENTS welcoming over to others. Welcome


Robert T. Leverett
Cofounder, Eastern Native Tree Society