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Time, space, and redwood treesAuthor(s): Leslie M. Reid
Source: In: LeBlanc, John, ed., Conference on Coast Redwood Forest Ecology and Management, 18-20 June 1996, Humboldt State University, Arcata, California. p. 42-45.
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
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DescriptionAbstract - Our past concern with details gave us the type of information we needed to manage blocks of redwoods to produce the values we decided were important. But the values that have more recently been recognized as important--species viability, genetic diversity, and so on--cannot be managed on the scale of forest patches, and we must come to understand how biological, sociological, and physical processes interact to create the redwood ecoscape. These issues force us to look at the redwood ecoscape as a whole, and even the precepts of the problems are new. First, things change. The distribution of redwoods reflects the pattern of past climates and disturbances, and there has never been a steady-state distribution because conditions throughout the redwoods' potential range change continually through time. At the same time, the forest modifies its own environment as it grows. Second, normal isn't normal. In many systems, the rare, large disturbances ultimately control the character of the ecoscape. We thus cannot manage for average conditions, but must manage for the extremes, and this is difficult if our management history is so short that our methods have not yet been tested by the extremes. And third, the divisions between disciplines are relatively arbitrary. The nature of a question determines the information needed to answer it, and the questions increasingly demand interdisciplinary answers. These three conceptual hurdles have made it difficult to develop management strategies that address the spatial and temporal scales relevant to newly emerging issues. \n
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CitationReid, Leslie M. 1996. Time, space, and redwood trees. In: LeBlanc, John, ed., Conference on Coast Redwood Forest Ecology and Management, 18-20 June 1996, Humboldt State University, Arcata, California. p. 42-45.
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