Communities not infrequently offer special inducements to certain industries to locate in their midst, and such industries often furnish, directly or indirectly, the means of livelihood for the greater portion of the inhabitants. They become such an integral part of the community that their withdrawal would be an economic calamity. A suggestion of such a thing would be fought vigorously by the citizens. If the citizens realized the value of the forest to the country as a source of permanent employment and permanent supply, they would fight against its removal just as vigorously and they would promote any means leading to its perpetuation.
So the work of the propagandist of fire protection is to present to the public the relation of the forests to the industries dependent upon their products, the relation of forest industries to other industries and the relations of the forests to the public treasury. The annual value of the products of the lumber industry in Canada is surpassed only by those of agriculture and manufactures. A large, but, in reality, diminishing, portion of the revenues of the eastern provinces is obtained from the forests. The taxpayer should be made to appreciate the relation of all this to his pocketbook. When he does, the unrestrained destruction of forests by fires will be regarded as an economic waste not to be tolerated.
In devising a policy for the proper management of this watershed there should first be made a classification and segregation of the lands which are capable of agricultural use from those which should be forever given over to timber culture.
As has been shown in a previous report*, many farms ss
Possibi ibilhities ies
which had been abandoned, and others which are still Po
farmed, are really too poor for successful farming.
Nevertheless, there are areas which are capable of agricultural use. Indeed, the richest and, probably, the most potentially profitable soils have been overlooked. These could be made useful for cattle ranching and specialized farming.
The area burned many times, as indicated on the accompanying map (facing page 166), is over 12,000 acres. At least one-quarter of this is composed of marshes and swamps. Many of these already have hay of such quality that cattle readily fatten on it, and many more could be made to do so without a prohibitive amount of work upon them. The more intractable portions could be fenced for grazing purposes, while the more easily managed areas could raise the hay to
*Trent Watershed Survey. Commission of Conservation, 1913.