A large swatch of forest being cleared of timber off Maxwelton Road will be replanted under a state permit. Photo by Patricia Guthrie/Whidbey News Group

A large swatch of forest being cleared of timber off Maxwelton Road will be replanted under a state permit. Photo by Patricia Guthrie/Whidbey News Group

Clearcut swath on Maxwelton Road will be replanted

State permit allows 16 acres of timber harvest

A highly visible swatch of land being cleared of trees on Maxwelton Road will be replanted, according to the Washington State Department of Natural Resources.

“The harvest is set for 16 acres of uneven-aged timber, and the owner intends to replant the harvested area,” said Kenny Ocker, communications manager.

Under the Forest Practices Permit application, the owner will have three years after the completion of the harvest to finish replanting, Ocker said.

For the past two weeks, a logging crew with heavy machinery has been cutting, stripping and piling trees like oversized toothpicks just off a heavily-traveled stretch of Maxwelton Road.

The harvest site is just north of South Whidbey Assembly, Island Christian Academy, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and less than one mile from South Whidbey Community Park and the school district.

Huge flatbed trucks have been hauling away the timber on a continual basis.

The property owner, listed on the permit as Lewis R. Honnen of Santa Rosa, Calif., did not plan to build any roads for the harvest, Ocker said. No streams or wetlands are listed as existing within the area of the clear cut.

At least two green trees per acre are to be left standing, as well as two down logs per acre, under state rules. Three snags per acre are also to be left if they exist for nesting birds.

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