A Long-Term View of Old-Growth Deciduous ForestsThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
Lowland old-growth forests in the Southeastern United States and Eastern Europe (Poland) survived because of accidents of history, topography, and ownership until they came under governmental protection. Such old-growth stands are the similar the world over; they have trees of many ages, patchy distribution of habitats, and a variety of microhabitats, all of which result from the death and fall of trees. Species diversity is high for both plants and animals. Old-growth forests constitute important habitat for many carnivores and for some endangered species; they are places for ecological research and for recreation and enjoyment. Science has shown that management, as well as protection, is necessary and can improve conditions.