Submission to Forestry Maps, Dec 30, 2020
This proposed 20% retention shelterwood harvest site supports an unusually healthy american beech population; some trunk diameters (sample geo-located photos available) exceed 20 cm (well over the 5 cm required to indicate disease resistance). The canopy is dominated by gigantic yellow birch (diameters over 3 feet). There are also some large (sugar?) maples scattered. No other tree species were observed in the block. The understory is largely shrub beech and birch. Snow cover prevented further examination of the understory other than that there is lots of beech and birch leaf litter. Scattered deadfall is 2 to 3 feet diameter. This is an unusually open canopy old growth forest, likely due to die back of large old beech many years ago. Removing the shelter currently provided by the large old growth birch trees will leave the healthy regenerating beeches very exposed. The whole block should be reassessed for Old Growth Status and presence of associated old forest species. It is the opinion of the Nova Scotia Wild Flora Society that the presence of still healthy beech is reason enough not to remove shelterwood from the block.
With kindest regards
Mary Macaulay, P. Eng. on behalf of NSWFS (secretary)
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