Who Lives There

Young Forest is Essential for a Healthy Land

More than 60 kinds of wildlife, including mammals, birds, reptiles, and insects, need young forest to survive. Over the last 50 years, these creatures have steadily become rarer as the amount of young forest has dwindled on the landscape.

Chestnut-sided warbler

Partners are teaming up to make the young forest needed by chestnut-sided warblers and more than 60 other kinds of wildlife./J. Larkin

Some of these animals have been classified as threatened or even endangered.

And many other more common animals also need young forest, seeking out this productive, thickly vegetated habitat at different times of the year to find food, raise their young, or take shelter from predators or inclement weather. Fortunately, a growing number of conservationists have enlisted in the Young Forest Project and have started creating the young forest and shrubland that our native wildlife depends on. Across 17 Eastern and Upper Midwestern states, natural resource professionals and landowners are working together to preserve important tracts of land and to manage both public and private holdings to recreate the kind of natural disturbance events that once produced an ongoing supply of young forest.

Partners include private landowners, forest products companies, state and federal agencies, Native American tribes, the U.S. military, municipalities, and many others.

Discover more about the animals that need young forest in Under Cover: Wildlife of Shrublands and Young Forest (9 MB download), also available for purchase as a print publication from the Wildlife Management Institute.

Browse through this website and our sister websites on the American woodcock and New England cottontail to learn how partners are creating and refreshing important young forest habitat for wildlife.

And click on the animals' names in the dropdowns beneath Who Lives There to find descriptions, photos, and range maps for different species.