89 Natural Facts About Lungs of the Earth: Forests

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1Abandoned baby

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.


2. 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.


3. 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.


4. 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.


5. 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


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6Smokey Bear

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


7. 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.


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


9. 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".


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


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11Pestalotiopsis microspora

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.


12. 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.


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


14. The underwater forest off Alabama coast uncovered by Hurricane Katrina is 50,000-year-old.


15. 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."


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16Honey mushroom

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.


17. After being attacked by a grizzly bear, a man spent 7 years and $150,000 to build a bear-proof suit to take revenge on the bear. When he found back the bear years later, he discovered that he was unable to chase the bear in the hilly forest since he only tested the suit on flat ground.


18. The largest cave in the world named Hang Son Doong or mountain river cave houses a rain forest in its largest chamber, wasn't discovered until 1991 and wasn't explored until 2009.


19. Charcoal beetles fly into still-burning forest fires to mate and lay eggs because competition and predators will be low. They sense distant fires using infrared armpit sensors.


20. More than 80% of the Earth’s natural forests have already been destroyed.


21Monkey orchid

There's a species of orchid that evolved to look like a replica of a monkey's face (Monkey orchid). It grows in the cloud forests of Peru and Ecuador.


22. London has so many trees that it can be classified as a forest


23. A single valley in Chad provides over 50% of the nutrient-rich dust that is in the Amazon rain forest.


24. There is a massive rain forest in the north of Iran


25. In the 19th Century, Americans purposely filled their parks with squirrels for entertainment purposes. They were rarely found outside of the forest beforehand.

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