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Old 02-07-2015, 04:13 PM   #21
poconoron
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Also, there are areas of the Adirondacks where timber harvesting regularly occurs- just not on Forest Preserve lands. Much of this land is becoming available to the public for recreation through the conservation easements. So one interesting in viewing fauna such as deer, hares, etc., would certainly be well advised to try visiting such an easement.
Good point on the easement lands. I have spent a bit of time in the easement lands around Speculator and plan on visiting others as well.
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Old 02-08-2015, 01:58 PM   #22
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Definitely true, but landscape-scale disturbance events, such as the microburst in the Five Ponds, can have a similar effect on forest preserve land as timber harvesting, at least in regards to introducing a lot of young browse and forage which in turn leads to an increase in the local fauna.

Over the past 2 decades, the Five Ponds Wilderness has very closely approximated the post-harvest conditions of a clearcut (the type of timber harvest that can often be most beneficial to wildlife species dependent on young forests for browse and cover).

Also, there are areas of the Adirondacks where timber harvesting regularly occurs- just not on Forest Preserve lands. Much of this land is becoming available to the public for recreation through the conservation easements. So one interesting in viewing fauna such as deer, hares, etc., would certainly be well advised to try visiting such an easement.
As I read your post it brought to mind going into the Santa Clara Tract just after the State bought it. Previously I believe it was owned by Champion who harvested timber off it. There was an incredible amount of wildlife in there at that time.
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Old 02-15-2015, 10:57 AM   #23
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We no longer allow fires to burn in the backwoods either, or at least attempt to snuff them out as soon as they get started. Before settlers came to the Adirondacks, I believe forest fires provided much habitat diversity and undergrowth beneficial to wildlife. Logging does much the same but the forever wild aspect of the park means a more mature forest and less wildlife methinks. I read a book (forgot the name) of a market hunter in the Paul Smith's area before it was settled. The tons of venison they brought to market was astounding to me and occurred for a number of years running.
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Old 02-15-2015, 10:06 PM   #24
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We no longer allow fires to burn in the backwoods either, or at least attempt to snuff them out as soon as they get started. Before settlers came to the Adirondacks, I believe forest fires provided much habitat diversity and undergrowth beneficial to wildlife. Logging does much the same but the forever wild aspect of the park means a more mature forest and less wildlife methinks. I read a book (forgot the name) of a market hunter in the Paul Smith's area before it was settled. The tons of venison they brought to market was astounding to me and occurred for a number of years running.
While it's true that in some ecosystems, fire plays a regular and healthy role, this really isn't true for most of the Adirondacks. Most of the Adirondack forest is receives too much precipitation, and is generally to wet, for fires to exist as a regular, large-scale disturbance.

I found a map a few years ago that listed the fire regimes of the native ecosystems of the entire US, and it stated that in the Adirondacks, natural fires only occurred on average with a frequency of once every 200+ years. I'll see if I can find it again.

EDIT: Here it is: http://www.fws.gov/invasives/staffTr...up_intro1.html
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Old 04-08-2015, 09:19 PM   #25
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I would completely agree with the statements made by visitors, as I hear them all the time. Further more I agree that ecologically the park has suffered from a host of reasons which cause a decline. (All or most species are here, but lacking per mile etc) In fact we have had several long discussions on this very forum about the same subject with lots of very spirited opinions but truth be told peoples perception, and actual species numbers both agree we do in fact have a problem. Any trip to the surrounding states and its clear that the overall abundance of wildlife is greater elsewhere. I often hear opinions /theories but I dont agree with most. Algonquin Park in Ontario, Baxter Park in Maine and surrounding areas, PA, white Mountains and so on all have something in common which is that while camping, driving , hiking etc you'll see orders of magnitude more overall wildlife including and in fact "especially" in the backcountry. In the adirondacks I have had trail cams for years in several locations (I dont hunt rather I simply appreciate studying local biodiversity) and sooner or later I see most species in front of the cameras or while hiking,paddling and such. But in a checkerboard park, surrounding like an island by to cities, highways etc and huge sport hunting and logging have taken their toll. For whatever reason people often argue that however its insanity to think we dont have a measurable impact. I know for example those working for the logging industry will soon turn this statement into a long winded bla bla post but what I would truly love to see happen, is a solid study comparing the species per mile to other parks and I suspect you would see that we take too much offer too little and change too late. On the lighter side there are some great folks working to help change that. I just wish there were more of those types making decisions to stop construction in the park.
I have to agree with this. I suggested something along these lines a few years ago in a similar discussion and many people basically told me I was crazy - even some of the mods...

The Adirondacks to me, sadly, seem like wilderness void of wildlife.

I've been in VERY remote areas, I have been VERY quiet, I have been in areas in which I could see for a mile all around - if I scared something you would think I would see it running off in the distance at least.

I don't want to start an argument here but I think we have to start thinking about MANY things in COMPLETELY different ways. Things that people find acceptable need to be REJECTED.

When I open a trapping magazine and some guy from the Adirondacks has 40 red fox pelts hanging and drying or whatever...

I've seen ONE red fox in the Adirondacks in my 25 years of going there.

Why is trapping permitted?

Why is hunting of animals that you cannot eat permitted?
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Old 04-09-2015, 09:58 AM   #26
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I don't want to start an argument here but I think we have to start thinking about MANY things in COMPLETELY different ways. Things that people find acceptable need to be REJECTED.

Why is trapping permitted?

Why is hunting of animals that you cannot eat permitted?
LOL at you not wanting to start an argument, then following with statements like that.

As to adk's post about lack of wildlife there are a bunch of reasons that make the Adirondacks tough habitat for wildlife to thrive in. Lack of food is probably the first, caused in part by overmature forests. Say what you want about logging but there is no question that you'll see more wildlife in areas that have been logged. Long cold winters with deep snow and lots of coyotes are other factors that keep deer and small game numbers low.

If humans are to blame for the lack of wildlife in the Adirondacks could someone please explain why NJ, CT, MA, southern NY, and other suburban areas are overrun with deer, bears, and other critters? And hunting isn't the answer as those areas have far more hunting pressure per square mile than the Adirondacks.
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Old 04-09-2015, 10:32 AM   #27
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Lack of food is probably the first, caused in part by overmature forests. Say what you want about logging but there is no question that you'll see more wildlife in areas that have been logged.
Bingo..........that's the answer that makes the most sense. Northern Maine has winters just as tough as the ADKs and yet has more wildlife: reason - logging.

Pennsylvania has milder winters but more people per square mile than ADKs and yet has more wildlife. Reason: even on state lands, logging is permitted on a rotating 100 year basis.

Vermont and NH also allow some logging in National Forest areas and have far more moose than ADKs.
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Old 04-09-2015, 02:15 PM   #28
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What about the incredible biodiversity of the Amazon where most of the forest has never been touched by logging or are there other factors at play there?
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Old 04-09-2015, 02:42 PM   #29
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What about the incredible biodiversity of the Amazon where most of the forest has never been touched by logging or are there other factors at play there?
The Amazon is a completely different ecosystem then the Adirondacks. The habitat is almost too diffrent to compare.
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Old 04-09-2015, 06:28 PM   #30
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Sorry, I don't buy the more logging the better theory with regards to wildlife - it implies that wildlife need humans to impact the environment (negatively) for them to thrive. If that is the case how did wildlife do perfectly fine back when humans, native Americans in particular, left the forests pretty much alone?
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Old 04-09-2015, 06:33 PM   #31
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Bingo..........that's the answer that makes the most sense. Northern Maine has winters just as tough as the ADKs and yet has more wildlife: reason - logging.

Pennsylvania has milder winters but more people per square mile than ADKs and yet has more wildlife. Reason: even on state lands, logging is permitted on a rotating 100 year basis.

Vermont and NH also allow some logging in National Forest areas and have far more moose than ADKs.
I just think moose historically inhabited New England and have done well despite logging - I don't think logging has positively benefited them.
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Old 04-09-2015, 07:06 PM   #32
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Sorry, I don't buy the more logging the better theory with regards to wildlife - it implies that wildlife need humans to impact the environment (negatively) for them to thrive. If that is the case how did wildlife do perfectly fine back when humans, native Americans in particular, left the forests pretty much alone?
Forest fires did the job of logging.
Talk to almost any "old timer" and almost all of them will say they had more success hunting and seeing other wildlife when the blocks of land they hunted were timber company land. Sometime take a look at the sign posted on the bear pond road (watsons east triangle) just before the state line and consider what it says.
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Old 04-09-2015, 08:24 PM   #33
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Logging is not the only way to produce the types of environments that animals thrive in. It is understandable that we think that, however, especially when 'old timers' are the extent of our historical reference.

Fact is, what we witness with logging in regards to wildlife is simply an artificial recreation of the habitat that a natural forest would (and does) produce on its own.

DSethar alludes to this when he mentioned the blow down in the microburst, and Forest Dweller who points out that wildlife was abundant before logging.

Here is one of my favorite quotes on this topic from a DEC biologist and Regional Wildlife Manager:

Quote:
The Forest Preserve is better habitat for deer than once thought. The reason, he says, is that the woods in the Preserve are maturing, and in mature woods, openings often appear as a result of “forest decadence.”

“The pre-colonial forest was not an unbroken stand of huge trees. It was a very diverse mixture of young and old trees, with openings created by fire, wind, and dying old trees.”

The deer population will continue to grow as the Forest Preserve ages.
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Old 04-09-2015, 09:18 PM   #34
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I'm no expert, but wouldn't pre-colonial forests have been quite different with massive chestnut trees (a little further south) , woodland buffalo and elk, big cats, etc. The chestnut was a major food source for many animals. Aside from hunting and habitat loss that part of the food chain was lost.
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Old 04-09-2015, 09:37 PM   #35
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I'm no expert, but wouldn't pre-colonial forests have been quite different with massive chestnut trees (a little further south) , woodland buffalo and elk, big cats, etc. The chestnut was a major food source for many animals. Aside from hunting and habitat loss that part of the food chain was lost.
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Old 04-09-2015, 11:09 PM   #36
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Some species do better in areas that have been logged, and some need large tracts of undisturbed forest.
I'm not anti-logging. It's an important industry, and nowadays forestry has gotten really good at minimizing ecological damage. But we should have good sized untouched areas too. At least in my area (Massachusetts) the forestry/timber harvesting industry has gotten very aggressive about logging wherever possible. I've actually seen repeated claims that all forests NEED "management" to be healthy - which gives me the same reaction Forestdweller says above: it's pretty arrogant to claim that, since forests were around for millions of years, managing just fine, long before anyone was logging them.
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Old 04-10-2015, 01:09 AM   #37
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I'm no expert, but wouldn't pre-colonial forests have been quite different with massive chestnut trees (a little further south) , woodland buffalo and elk, big cats, etc. The chestnut was a major food source for many animals. Aside from hunting and habitat loss that part of the food chain was lost.
Possibly. But I am not sure that has much to do with the point he was making.

He was just referencing the life cycle of forests. Logging promotes wild life because it artificially clears out areas and allows new growth, etc. Mature forests do the same thing, naturally.

This certainly helps explain why the deer herd numbers have not declined in proportion to the decline in logging. Just the opposite has happened, actually.
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Old 04-10-2015, 09:48 AM   #38
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Bingo..........that's the answer that makes the most sense. Northern Maine has winters just as tough as the ADKs and yet has more wildlife: reason - logging.

Pennsylvania has milder winters but more people per square mile than ADKs and yet has more wildlife. Reason: even on state lands, logging is permitted on a rotating 100 year basis.

Vermont and NH also allow some logging in National Forest areas and have far more moose than ADKs.

To be clear: do "not" agree with the above post at all- I believe this sort of thinking is backward and originates from people who benefit by directly by "industry" i.e, logging. This is a discussion about biodiversity not about how you make money. As far as Maine's greater wildlife (Baxter Park) 20 x 40 mile (hunting and logging free zone) is the cause of more wildlife along with a vast border with Canada unobstructed.

The Adirondacks biodiversity would benefit by stopping the constant slaughter of its flora and fauna...
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Old 04-10-2015, 10:01 AM   #39
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Possibly. But I am not sure that has much to do with the point he was making.

He was just referencing the life cycle of forests. Logging promotes wild life because it artificially clears out areas and allows new growth, etc. Mature forests do the same thing, naturally.

This certainly helps explain why the deer herd numbers have not declined in proportion to the decline in logging. Just the opposite has happened, actually.

While logging has some of the benefits previously mentioned, I don't think it is equivalent to natural fires and blowdowns. The latter deposit the material back into the soil where logging removes most of it. Also, fire is known to trigger seed germination, at least in some environments.
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Old 04-10-2015, 10:07 AM   #40
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While logging has some of the benefits previously mentioned, I don't think it is equivalent to natural fires and blowdowns. The latter deposit the material back into the soil where logging removes most of it. Also, fire is known to trigger seed germination, at least in some environments.

Well said...
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