100 Interesting Facts about Forests

1a-Pinene compound

One of the reasons your lungs feel refreshed when walking through a pine forest is because of an anti-inflammatory compound called a-Pinene, found in conifers. It is used as a bronchodilator in the treatment of asthma and abundantly present in marijuana.

2. In Indian elections, no voter is expected to travel more than 2km to a polling station. This sees an entire team set up a full station for a single voter in the Gir forest.

3. In July 2013, Thailand began planting millions of trees by dropping “seed bombs.” The five-year pilot project utilizes aerial reforestation to boost forest regeneration

4. 7 members of an isolated Indian tribe emerged from the Amazon and made contact with people in a village near the Peruvian border because "violent attacks" by outsiders had driven them from the forest. Later, details emerged that their elder relatives were massacred and their houses set on fire.

5. Jadav Molai single-handedly converted a washed out land into a 1,360-acre forest. The forest is now home to tigers and rhinoceros too.

6Bald Eagle

The United States national bird, the bald eagle, was saved from the threat of extinction by the actions of the EPA and a Chippewa National Forest Wildlife biologist.

7. Chimpanzees fart so loudly and frequently that scientists locate them in forest occasionally by following the farts.

8. There is an ancient old growth forest bordering Poland called Białowieża Forest. It resembles what most of Europe looked like before the 14th century. This story of conservation has been well documented over the last 500 years and is almost as rich as the ecosystem the forest supports.

9. There is a tree named Pando that is technically an entire forest. It is a clonal colony of 4700 aspens that all share the same root system.

10. A newborn baby abandoned in the forest in Kenya for 2 days was rescued by a stray dog who carried the baby all the way back to her own litter of puppies.

11Henry Johnson

A hero named Henry Johnson (Black Death) of the Harlem Hellfighters routed 36 Germans single-handedly, while rescuing a fellow soldier and suffering 22 wounds at Argonne Forest. Then died 10 years later, as a destitute alcoholic, after being denied disability and a purple heart.

12. Seattle is planning to build a new city park filled with hundreds of edible plants- such as fruit trees, vegetable plants, herbs, etc- which will be free to everyone. If successful, it will be the first "Urban Food Forest" of the nation.

13. The destruction under Genghis Khan may have scrubbed as much as 700 million tons of carbon from the atmosphere by allowing forests to regrow on previously populated and cultivated land.

14. In 1971, LANSA Flight 508 crashed over the Amazon Jungle, killing all crew and 85 of 86 passengers. The sole survivor was a 17 year old girl named Juliane Koepcke, who fell 2 miles down into the rainforest strapped to her seat, survived the fall and walked the jungle injured for 10 days until she was rescued by locals

15. Due to decades of fire prevention leading to an increase in fuel for forest fires, Smokey Bear has actually helped make forest fires more dangerous than otherwise

16King Louie

The Disney animated Jungle Book character, King Louie, is an Orangutan but in the live action version, they changed him to a Gigantopithecus. Although extinct they once lived in the forest throughout India, which avoids the movie perpetuating a geographic fallacy.

17. Many common earthworms are invasive species to North America and are causing great harm to forests

18. During the 1980s the Swiss army fired off shells during an exercise and mistakenly burned a patch of forest inside the country Liechtenstein. The incident was said to have been resolved "over a case of white wine".

19. In 1996, Woody Harrelson was arrested for climbing the Golden Gate Bridge to hang a banner protesting the destruction of the Redwood forest.

20. In 2011, a fungus named Pestalotiopsis microspora was found in the Amazon Forest that can feed on a diet solely of polyurethane (plastic). It can also do so in a non-aerobic environment.

21Raccoons

A 70's cartoon inspired Japanese to adopt baby raccoons as pets. As a result, Japan imported thousands of raccoons from America. Seeing how violent they could be, families released them into forests following one scene in the cartoon. Raccoons multiplied - damaged 80% of Japan's temples.

22. The word "Jurassic," which we so often associate with dinosaurs, comes from the Celtic word for "forest"

23. Underwater Forest off Alabama Coast Uncovered by Katrina is 50,000 Years Old

24. Johnny Cash accidentally started a wildfire when he let his pickup overheat in a California forest. When asked why he did it, he responded: "I didn't do it, my truck did, and it's dead, so you can't question it."

25. There is a 2400-year-old giant "honey mushroom" in Oregon, covering 2200 acres, slowly killing off the trees in the forest. It is the largest living organism on the planet.

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