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Restoration of wind damaged forests
in the Hășmaș Mountains

We are planting European beech (Fagus sylvatica), Silver fir (Abies alba) (species that develop pivoting roots) and Norway spruce (Picea abies) mixed forests in Cheile Bicazului-Hasmaș National Park on wind-damaged surfaces in order to increase the resistance of the newly formed forests to the effects of global climate change.

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The Lonely Rock in the Hasmas Mountains

At the beginning of years 2019 and 2020, there was massive wind damages in forests of significant areas in the Carpathians, in the Hășmaș Mountains, among others.
Windthrows are the result of extreme weather events (high intensity winds) that cause physical damage to the affected trees by uprooting or breaking tree trunks.

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Wind damaged forest stands in the Hasmas Mountains

Such extreme weather events (high winds, heavy snow, extreme drought, extreme heat waves, etc.) are expected to become more frequent as a result of global climate changes.
The windthrows more severely affected the spruce forests (Picea abies) that dominate the high regions of the Carpathian Mountains. The natural habitat of the spruce is between 600-800 m and 1800-2000 meters. For economic reasons, spruce stands have been planted in significant areas, even outside their natural habitat.

 

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Wind damaged spruce (Picea abies) forest stands in the Hasmas Mountains

Such extreme weather events (high winds, heavy snow, extreme drought, extreme heat waves, etc.) are expected to become more frequent as a result of global climate changes and the spruce forests (Picea abies) that dominate the high regions of the Carpathian Mountains will be the most affected.

At the same time, pure spruce forests will be the most affected by the effects of climate change in the future, they have a reduced capacity to tolerate the stress induced by drought and extreme meteorological phenomena (high intensity winds) and biotic factors that will benefit from the new climate conditions (e.g. spruce bark beetle - Ips typographus). Forests will adapt to the new conditions, but the emergence of more drought-resistant and more thermophilic tree species will be much slower.

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Maternal galleries of spruce bark beetle (Ips typographus) under the bark of a Norway spruce (Picea abies) 

The windthrows offer the possibility to introduce slight changes in the composition of the species - mimicking the altitudinal migration of forest areas. This will result in an increase in the resistance of forests to changes in climate conditions.

In November 2020 we started planting trees in the integrally protected zone of the Cheile Bicazului-Hasmas National Park. We planted the first species of the mix - the Norway spruce (Picea abies). In the planting season of spring 2020 we are going to plant 7000 seedlings of  Silver fir (Abies alba), European beech (Fagus sylvatica) and Norway spruce (Picea abies).
 

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We are planting all the Transylmagica seedlings inside the protected areas, creating forests that will provide habitat for the fauna of the last truly wild forests of Europe.
 

Planting in the Cheile Bicazului - Hasmas National Park in November 2021
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Beech( Fagus sylvatica) seedling planted in the Hasmas Mountains in 2022
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Norway spruce ( Picea abies) seedling planted in 2022
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Planting in the Hasmas Mountains - November 2022
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Brown bear (Ursus arctos) - in the Hasmas Mountains
2023 spring planting site
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