Acadian-Appalachian Montane Spruce-Fir Forest

This is the most extensive forest ecological system in the spruce-fir region of the northern Appalachian Mountains. It occurs mostly upwards of 1500 feet in elevation and is restricted to progressively higher elevations southward. Northward, it is often contiguous with Acadian Low-Elevation Spruce-Fir Forest. At higher elevations, it gives way to Acadian-Appalachian Subalpine Woodland and Heath-Krummholz, where the trees are stunted and more sparse. It often forms a mosaic of patches of solid spruce-fir and mixed spruce-fir-birch patches, with occasional smaller inclusions of northern hardwoods, or patches of white birch in former burn areas. Overall, the tree cover is at least half coniferous. Red spruce and balsam fir are the dominant conifers. Gaps formed by wind, snow, ice, and harvesting are the major replacement agents; fires may be important but only rarely. For more information, see NatureServe Explorer.

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