baumzaehlen - Primeval Forests & Their Trees

©2017copyright christoph hase

Harz National Park, Germany

 

At lower altitudes, the forests of this park (247 km2) were clear-felled in the past, but above 900 metres there are no signs of logging. From 1949 to German reunification in 1990, the park was located in the border zone between West and East Germany, which has protected it.1 Above 900 metres, forest is almost purely Opens internal link in current windowPicea abies (Norway spruce). In the natural state, Opens internal link in current windowSorbus aucuparia (European rowan) would comprise about 10 % of the trees but it is now scarce due to red deer (Cervus elaphus) over-population2. European spruce bark beetle (Ips typographus) has destroyed large areas of forest in recent years.


An old steam train runs from Schierke to the highest top, Brocken (1141m), where the annual precipitation is 1814 mm and the average annual temperature 2.9°C 3. Persistent fogs further increase the precipitation by 160–200 mm 4. Strong southwestern winds prevail; consequently, the precipitation is higher on the southwestern slope than on the other side of the mountain and the forest boggy.

 

References:

 

1       Sperber, G. & Thierfelder, S. (2005): Urwälder Deutschlands. BLV Verlagsgesellschaft mbH.

2       Nationalpark Harz. Pers. comm. (2012)

3       http://www.brocken.biz/

4       Köhler, L. et al. (2014): Cloud water interception and element deposition differ largely between Norway spruce stands along an elevation transect in Harz Mountains, Germany. Ecohydrology Volume 8, Issue 6, pp. 1048-64.

 

Official site:

 

www.nationalpark-harz.de/en/

 

Video clip:

 

www.youtube.com/watch

 

Boggy Picea abies (Norway spruce) forest on the southwestern slope. Elev. 950 m.
Boggy Picea abies (Norway spruce) forest on the southwestern slope. Elev. 970 m.
Boggy Picea abies (Norway spruce) forest on the southwestern slope at 970 m.
Picea abies (Norway spruce) forest on the northeastern slope at 950 m. Dead forest in the background.
Picea abies (Norway spruce) forest on the northeastern slope at 950 m.
Picea abies (Norway spruce) forest on the northeastern slope at 950 m.
Picea abies (Norway spruce) forest on the northeastern slope at 1000 m.
Sorbus aucuparia (European rowan) in Picea abies (Norway spruce) forest at 960 m.
Small patch of bog in Picea abies (Norway spruce) forest. Elev. 1020 m.
Picea abies (Norway spruce) near tree limit at 1120 m.