Olympic Habitat Development Study
US FOREST SERVICE
Annoyed supervisor catches three men sitting around playing cards in a forest. Caption says WE'RE NOT SLACKING BOSS. WE'RE JUST WAITING FOR OUR STAND TO DEVELOP THE FEATURES OF AN OLD-GROWTH FOREST.

Well, George may have his lingo right, but his boss is right to suspect they are slacking off. It is not possible to develop the features of forest complexity during the time it would take to play a card game. Some features - such as spatial diversity (variation in spacing between trees or other forest features) and species composition (species composition can be altered by planting or by selectively removing some species more than others) - may be changed fairly quickly, but other features will take decades to develop. We hope that our restoration work will accelerate the development of large diameter trees and multi-layered stands. We can't speed up the development of an old-growth stand - but we hope we can speed up the formation of stand characteristics which will make a stand suitable habitat more quickly than if we did nothing.