08/13/12 The Indiana Department of Natural Resources has announced that landowners who have non-forested acreage enrolled in the Classified Forest and Wildlands Program may be eligible for a special permit to allow hay cutting on a limited basis.

“The DNR recognizes the drought has taken a significant toll on hay production across the state and that many farmers are in need of livestock feed,” DNR Director Rob Carter said. “Allowing hay to be cut on a limited amount of acreage on classified wildlands may benefit these livestock producers.”

The Classified Forest and Wildlands Program encourages landowners to enroll property for the purpose of promoting good forestry and wildlife management. Landowners will be allowed to cut up to 10 percent or five acres of hay, whichever is less. The acreage calculation will be based on the non-forested acreage enrolled in the program.

“The special permit for cutting hay is a deviation from our standard rules, but we think that the unprecedented drought justifies a one-time special permit,” Carter said.

Classified Forest and Wildland owners interested in obtaining a special permit should contact their district forester. A list of district foresters can be found at dnr.IN.gov/forestry.