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The Temperate Deciduous Forest Biome Robinson Forest, Eastern Kentucky.

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Presentation on theme: "The Temperate Deciduous Forest Biome Robinson Forest, Eastern Kentucky."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Temperate Deciduous Forest Biome Robinson Forest, Eastern Kentucky

2 Ecological importance of forests Forests are WATERSHEDS: A watershed is the land base surrounding and draining downhill into a particular river or stream Maroon Bells watershed above Aspen, Colorado

3 Forested Watersheds They absorb, hold, and gradually release H 2 O to agricultural and urban areas downstream Forested watersheds control erosion to reduce sediment in streams and lakes, and reduce flooding Daniel Boone National Forest, KY

4 Forests Regulate Climate Up to 80% (tropical forests) of moisture in air is from evaporation and transpiration of moisture from trees local - wet and cool around trees where otherwise hot and dry –without trees, rain causes soil erosion and fertility drops global - forests absorb solar radiation near equator –cut trees --> radiation + heat reflected --> changes wind, precipitation, and temperature worldwide general - trees absorb CO 2, add O 2, cleansing air –cutting and burning tree releases CO 2 into air, and CO 2 is lost from exposed soil - no tree to absorb that CO 2

5 Forests regulate both humidity and temperature

6 Forests as filters Trees absorb noise Trees filter out pollution (as gasses are exchanged) Forests help us clear our minds: –provide solitude, beauty, and nourish human spirit

7 Forests provide biodiversity Forests contain a greater diversity of wildlife than any other terrestrial biome How diverse are the forests of eastern Kentucky compared to the rest of the U.S. and other parts of the world?

8 What is the $$ value of a tree? Economists (e.g., timber company) - engage in cost-benefit analysis to determine if money can be made on lumber and paper An average tree in the eastern US might be worth about $750 for its wood products value The costs to produce the products involve –Purchasing the standing timber –Harvest costs –Transportation costs –Processing costs –Marketing and delivery costs

9 What’s a tree worth ALIVE? If you could take all the goods and services produced by ONE average tree over 50 years: –$ 31, 250 of O 2 –$ 62, 500 in pollution reduction –$ 31, 250 in soil fertility –$ 37, 500 in water recycling and humidity control –$ 31, 250 in wildlife habitat –$ 2,500 in protein Total = $196,250

10 Real costs tree harvest? We justify forest practices on a SHORT TERM basis without considering value of ecological benefits that support other economic activities and help sustain the biosphere We allow timber companies to cut our trees without collecting for nearly $200,000 in benefits that tree might otherwise provide so that they can make $750. Need to consider the external costs (lost benefits)

11 The timber industry Hardwoods –mostly deciduous; oaks, hickories, cherry –furniture, flooring, cabinets –The native, “climax” species in eastern Kentucky Softwoods –mostly evergreen, conifers; pines, firs, spruce –paper, construction timber, plywood –High volume needed –Fast growing –High economic gain

12 What constitutes a forest? CLOSED FOREST - closed canopy –62 % of forests OPEN FOREST – “WOODLANDS” –abundant trees but canopy not closed –Remaining 38% Broadleaf forest = ~ 2/3 of world’s forests Coniferous forest = ~ 1/3

13 Secondary vs. Old Growth SECONDARY FORESTS - resulting from secondary ecological succession after: –logging –clearing for agriculture and abandoned –Mining OLD GROWTH - uncut, virgin forest, resulting in: –massive trees hundreds to thousands of years old –e.g., Douglas fir live to about 250 years old –Hemlock, Giant Sequoia, Coastal Redwoods live to 1,000’s of years old –Pine in Southeastern US – live to only 80 years old –Thousands of years old

14  Coastal redwood in California Yellow Birch in Michigan   Tree trunk in Blanton Forest in southeastern Kentucky Giant Sequoias in California 

15 Old Growth Forests provide - greater diversity of plants - greater diversity of animals -tree cavities!! -Wood ducks, squirrels, raccoons, -food production -Acorn production is much higher in older trees. –Food production for wildlife is generally greater in old growth

16 Forest Edge – good or bad? EDGE habitat in treefall gap vs. man-made forest management of commercially important trees - most are shade-intolerant (need clear open area to grow) shade tolerant - typically the “climax” species - KY = CHESTNUT, OAK, POPULAR - Lilly Cornett Woods - Letcher Co. near Whitesburg

17 Only you can appreciate forest fires Fires –Smokey the Bear!! –once thought harmful –rapid regeneration after fire –can remove competitors and return nutrients to soil, leaving large, fire - resistant species –can remove litter fungi –Giant Sequoia needs geminate only after fire ( or after intense heat!!) Surface fire - litter and undergrowth only Crown fires - hot, usually where fires have bow prevented (i.e. lots of dead wood in tree tops)

18 Prescribed fire Prescribed burning - to do natures work on man’s schedule Get different results depending on –Time of year –Time of day –Moisture content of air –Geographic location –Species composition

19 Diseases of forests DISEASES - in healthy, diverse forests, disease rarely get out of hand resistant species / genotypes CHESTNUT BLIGHT: CHINA - almost all DUTCH ELM DISEASE: ASIA and EUROPE - 2/3 killed WHITE - PINE BLISTER RUST: EUROPE –constant problem; esp. in monocultures

20 Impacts of insects on forests birds, etc. usually control insects bark beetle in S. and W. U.S. pine / spruce Spruce budworm - defoliate Gypsy moth Aphids - suck sap (wooly aphid) and scale insect

21 Hemlock Wooly Adelgid

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