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Ancient forests, a conservation priority

Nature as a reference Some lessons learnt Criteria

Indicator

Impact

Associated functions and taxa

Diversity

Number of tree species

++

Phytophytes, fungi, lichens

Associated habitats

% of natural openings

++

Plants, insects, birds, large herbivores

Microhabitats of living trees

+++

Nativeness

% (of area, cover, basal area)

Structural complexity

% of unevenaged stands

+ ++

Number of veteran/ large trees Maturity

+++ Deadwood volume and diversity +

cavity dwelling species, bats Genetic importance Birds, bats 25% of species richness, cavity dwelling and saproxylics, fungi, lichens

Dynamics

Complete sylvigenesis

Functional importance, regeneration

Continuity in space

Connectivity of forest species

+ or +++

Large mammals, species with low dispersal potential

Ancientness

Time with forest cover (>150 y)

+++

Geophytes, ant dispersed species, fertility

2011 wwf vallauri