The Importance Of Forest Diversity

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Forests contain a large amount of terrestrial biodiversity and are considered important components of terrestrial ecosystems that provide several crucial ecosystem goods and services to humanity (Gamfeldt et al. 2013). Forest biodiversity encompasses not only trees but all life forms found within forest ecosystems. However, trees are essential elements of forests that cannot be replaced with any other elements. Trees, along with various other ecological variables, create ecological and physical variation in forests and provide food, shelter and living space for numerous organisms (Jones et al 1994). Trees provide a humid environment for understory plants, and their fallen leaves affect soil conditions and protect seeds, seedlings and soil organisms (Callaway and Walker 1997). Tree species diversity promotes timber production (Morin et al 2011), influences carbon storage and provides more resistance to disturbance effects (Pedro et al. 2015) and insect herbivores (Castagneyrol et al, 2014). Gamfeldt et al. (2013) stated that tree species richness in boreal and temperate forests was positively affected by multiple ecosystem functions, such as tree growth, topsoil carbon storage, berry production, game production potential, the presence of deadwood and biodiversity in the understory. Therefore, knowing and conserving a variation of tree species in a forest is crucial to ensure a future potential of high levels of multiple ecosystem services (Gamfeldt et al. 2013).

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