Special Report of Captain George P. Ahern, Ninth U.S. Infantry, in Charge of Forestry Bureau, Philippine Islands, Covering the Period from April, 1900, to July 30,1901
This 139-page report outlines the state of the Spanish colonial Forestry Bureau at time of arrival of US forces in the Philippines (~1900), and reforms instituted by Captain Ahern. He describes the timber business in the Philippines including the state of the forested lands, species exploited, and volumes exported. At that time, 160 species of native trees were exported, but the Forestry Bureau knew of 665 native tree species. Ahern suggests trying to find a use for them to make timber extraction more profitable. Samples of 100 species were sent to the US for exhibition.
Conclusions & Takeaways
The report lists commercial timber species, organized in 6 groups according to commercial value (p. 35-40). Groups 3,4, and 5 were only to be used for firewood (including most dipterocarp species). The most valuable timber species include Molave, Ipil, Yacal, Dungon, Calantas, Narra, Tindalo, Acle, Luan, Betis, Aranga, Baticulin, Batitinan, Amuiguis, Guijo, Apitong, Panao, Sacat, Balacat, Malabulac, and Malasantol. The report briefly outlines the forest resources of the different Philippine provinces for commercial interests and defines the main challenges to include a lack of trained foresters and the absence of markets for the majority of timber species in the Philippine forests. However, the Bureau of Forestry already had wood samples of 450 species of trees from the Philippine Islands in Manila.
Special report of Captain George P. Ahern .. in charge of Forestry Bureau, Philippine Islands, covering the period from April, 1900, to July 30, 1901. Division of Insular Affairs, War Department. Govt. Print. Off.,; 1901. doi:10.5962/bhl.title.24866..
- Forestry Bureau, Philippines