New York Natural Heritage Program
Mountain Fir Forest
Mountain fir forest on Rocky Peak Ridge Tim Howard
System: Terrestrial
SubSystem: Forested Uplands

State Protection: Not Listed
Federal Protection: Not Listed

State Rarity Rank: S2
A State Rarity Rank of S2 means: Typically 6 to 20 occurrences, few remaining individuals, acres, or miles of stream, or factors demonstrably make it very vulnerable in New York State.

Global Rarity Rank: G3
A Global Rarity Rank of G3 means: Either rare and local throughout its range (21 to 100 occurrences), or found locally (even abundantly at some of its locations) in a restricted range (e.g. a physiographic region), or vulnerable to extinction throughout its range because of other factors.


Did you know?
In certain areas mountain fir forests exhibit a distinctive pattern of disturbance and regrowth called "wave-regeneration." From a distance the forest appears patchy with large areas of green canopy interspersed with crescent-shaped bands of dead trees. These fir waves consist of "troughs" of standing and windthrown dead trees, grading downhill first into a zone of vigorous fir seedlings, then into a dense stand of fir saplings, and finally to a "crest" of mature fir trees that border another band of standing dead and windthrown trees. The only other place in the world where fir waves occur is in the mountains of Japan.

State Ranking Justification [-]
There are only 5 to 25 occurrences statewide. There are several large occurrences protected on state land. This community is restricted to the high-elevation slopes of mountainous areas generally above 4,000 feet, and includes several very large, high quality examples. The current trend of this community is probably declining slightly due to the combined effects of atmospheric deposition, recreational overuse, and logging. This community has probably declined moderately from historical numbers likely correlated with logging and development of the surrounding landscape.

Short-term Trends [-]

Long-term Trends [-]