What part of Canada is covered with forests?

Canada is the home to 10 percent of the world’s forests, which cover almost half of the Canadian landscape. Boreal forests comprise the largest forested area, forming a continuous belt from Newfoundland north to Alaska and west to the Rocky Mountains. While the boreal forest includes a mix of trembling aspen, white birch, and other deciduous trees, it is mostly coniferous. The region is mainly covered with poplar, larch, spruce, cold-hardy pine, and birch and fir forests. It also comprises wetlands, rivers, and lakes, featuring treeless areas such as heathlands and alpine areas.

The sub-region, found to the north of the Boreal forest region, is characterized by a shorter growing season and colder climate that nurtures larch and spruce. South of the Boreal forest region, there is a sub-region characterized by a warmer climate. It nurtures deciduous forests, where willow and trembling aspen flourish. The Subalpine region comprises coniferous forest that stretches from Alberta’s mountainous uplands through British Columbia and reaches the Pacific Coast. Boreal and Subalpine regions feature species such as trembling aspen, white spruce, and black spruce. The Montane region covers a small area east of the Rocky Mountains, parts of the Kootenay Valley, and most of British Columbia’s interior uplands. Prairie communities of herbs and bunch-grasses are found in the river valleys. The coastal area along the Pacific Coast is unique in that it is exclusively coniferous.

The Columbian forest region encompasses the Fraser and Thompson valleys, an extensive area of the Kootenay Valley, and the Quesnel Lake area. This forest region merges with the Subalpine, Montane, and Coast forest regions. The Carolinian or Deciduous forest region is found between Lakes Ontario, Erie, and Huron in south-western Ontario. The region features species such as cucumber tree, tulip tree, Kentucky coffee tree, red mulberry, and others. Other forest regions in Canada include: Tundra, Grasslands, Acadian, and Great Lakes/St. Lawrence. The Acadian forest region stretches across many of the Maritime Provinces. It is related to the Boreal region and the Great Lakes-St Lawrence region. The Grasslands forest region encompasses the prairies of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba supporting several tree species. Trembling aspen forms bluffs and groves around continuous dense stands and wet depressions.

Generally, all Forest regions represent groupings of forest by type. Forest types with similar requirements, e.g. climate and soil, are groups accordingly. Many forest types in Canada are driven by factors (disturbance agents) that seek to change the forest through non-biological and biological events. These include insect infestations, windstorms, and forest fires. A healthy forest is a forest that sustains and maintains a desirable ecosystem. Characteristics of healthy forests include aesthetic appeal, wildlife habitat, resilience, biodiversity, and resource sustainability.

Canada has the world’s 3rd largest area of forests, after Brazil and Russia. The forests in the country are dynamic, diverse, and the basis of life. They provide soul sytability, shade and oxygen, and modify the climate. Forests are used by environmental organizations, Aboriginal groups, individuals, recreationalists, trappers, scientists, and the forest industry.