Dick Cooke - Forestry Director

T: (575) 257-5544
F: (575) 257-2980
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Information for Residents

Ruidoso - A Wildland Urban Interface Story

Fire Behavior & the Wildland Fire Environment

Thinning Standards (Required Ordinance 42-80)

Swallow Fire Presentation

Ruidoso Case Study

Get a Certificate of Compliance

Forestry Terms

Forestry Contractors


Cost Share Program

Getting the Work Done

Increasing your Property Values

Fire's Natural Role

Preparing for a Wildfire

Protecting the Forests in Our Village

The Forestry Department's mission is to address Ruidoso's forest health challenges and to protect this community's values at risk to the hazards of wildfire.


Treatment Costs

Fuels management costs will vary depending on slope, among contractors, density of trees, landowner management objectives, and distance to roads accessible to the “grapple” trucks. Typically, a cost range to treat one acre of land with a structure on it is $1,200 to $2,000. A range for one acre of vacant land is $800.00 to $1,300. These ranges do not consider removal of hazard trees. Generally, hazard trees are large trees close to structures or power lines that require specialized training and equipment for safe removal. A large tree looming over a house may cost $500.00 to $1,500.00 or more. Chipping debris may increase or decrease the cost depending on slope and distance to accessible roads. Property owners should consider treatment and disposal options. Currently, there are funding opportunities through the Cost Share Program.

The Village Forestry Department maintains a list of Forestry Contractors as a courtesy for property owners. Forest Contractors Criterions for posting companies on the list are:

  • Contractor must maintain a current Village of Ruidoso business license;
  • Contractor must demonstrate their knowledge and experience;
  • Contractor must attend periodic forest contractor meetings conducted by the Village. The meetings keep contractors updated on fuels management requirements and forest health issues.  

Many of the forest contractors maintain workman’s comp insurance and liability insurance. However, the Village does not regulate or maintain a log of forest contractors’ insurances. The Village does not regulate pricing. Property owners should secure certificates of insurance from the contractor where applicable.  Pricing estimates will vary and residents are encouraged to shop around.