Meet Some Young Forest Face to Face
Lots of folks have joined in the regionwide effort to help wildlife by creating and renewing young forest: state and federal agencies, private landowners both large and small, the military, land trusts, towns and counties, wildlife organizations, Native American tribes, and businesses. There’s a growing understanding that a healthy helping of young forest needs to be part of our world today so that we don’t lose the wildlife that require this important habitat.
Many different wild animals need young forest. Some use it for breeding or nesting, or sheltering during inclement weather. Others take their young into stands of shrubs or densely regrowing woodland to feed on the abundant food in those settings. A large suite of insects, birds, reptiles, and mammals all require young forest. Some wildlife biologists whimsically call young forest "Nature's supermarket" or even compare it to a big natural shopping mall, where animals can find whatever they need, from food to social contact.
In the past, natural forces caused an ebb and flow of thousands of acres of young forest across the landscape. Today conservation-minded Americans are carefully using habitat management techniques, including timber harvesting, mowing, controlled burning, and planting, to make young forest in many different settings from working farms and woodlands to state wildlife management areas to national wildlife refuges. Many of these habitat projects are open to public visitation.
Learn about a sampling of such projects in the illustrated, easy-to-follow articles on this website. And take a field trip to visit this special habitat and view the wildlife that lives there.