Fisheries and Land Resources

Forestry and Agrifoods

Pre-Commercial Thinning

Pre-Commercial thinning (PCT) is the most important and widely practiced silvicultural treatment used in the Province today.

  • More than 1000 km2 have been treated Province-wide since 1979.
  • Treatments are applied to young, overdense, naturally-regenerated stands of Balsam Fir and Black Spruce.
  • Between 10,000 and 100,000 trees per hectare in naturally regenerated stands. PCT reduces this to between 2000 and 2500 evenly spaced crop trees per hectare.
  • Chainsaws are sometimes used but tool of choice is the specialty brush saw which is safer and faster.
  • Felled trees are left on site to rot and help fertilize remaining crop trees.
  • Treatment contributes significantly to future supply of high-value wood.


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