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Old 05-18-2016, 07:44 PM   #30
DSettahr's Avatar
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 4,472
Those could be grey birch, but I don't see anything distinctive that indicates to me 100% for sure that these trees are that species. The one bark characteristic that I look for in grey birch is obvious inverted "V's" or triangles where branches stem from the main trunk. Like this:

Gray birch, in my limited experience, also seems to be slightly less "peely" than paper birch (which does fit your image).

Gray birch also doesn't get very large- it rarely exceeds 30 feet in height.

But I'll be the first to admit that I don't have much experience with gray birch. I would want a good look at the leaves to be sure- they are are elongated and are very distinctive in comparison to paper birch leaves.

An easy way to distinguish between paper and yellow birch is to break a branch and then smell it. Yellow birches have sap that smells like wintergreen.

Black birches also have a sweet smell (they can be taped and the sap made into syrup, as with maples), but it's not easy to confuse a black birch with other types of birches that we have here in the northeast- they are very obviously darker in color.

Young aspens have creamy white bark and to the untrained eye, they are often easily mistaken for birches (there are no aspens in the set of images, however).

The "red pine" could also be scotch pine, an introduced species that was widely planted by the CCC that has become naturalized in many areas of the Adirondacks. The bark coloration would make more sense, I think- Red Pine does have reddish tint to the park in places, but scotch pine has a very obvious reddish-orange tint to younger portions of the tree.
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