Module 3 — Stand level components
of biodiversity
British Columbia
Ministry of Forests
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Module 3, Part B — Wildlife trees — continued
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Module 3

Recommendations for wildlife tree patches  

iconDo you agree with these two recommendations?
If so, why?
If not, why not? 

Are there other recommendations that you think should be made?
If so, what are they?


There are two recommendations for the area and distribution of wildlife tree patches:

  1. Wildlife tree patches can range in size from individual trees to patches of several hectares.

    Individual trees with high habitat value (e.g., a raptor nest tree or veteran tree) outside of patches can contribute to the required retention on a basal area equivalency basis.

  2. Wildlife tree patches are maintained for at least one rotation.

    Seed trees planned for removal do not contribute to wildlife retention targets. Generally, wildlife tree patches should not be entered for any level of harvesting. 

    However, if harvesting (or salvage) of selected trees is required to meet safety concerns, or objectives such as forest health  this may occur.

    Where appropriate, trees felled for safety reasons should be left on site for coarse woody debris. 

    Plans should specify acceptable levels of windthrow or other damage beyond which salvage operations should occur. Where salvage does occur, these areas should be replaced with other suitable wildlife tree patches as close to the original patch as practical.

Applications to forest management The ecological value of WTPs can often be enhanced with the retention of single stems throughout the cutblock area. When retaining individual stems, the following should be considered: 

See Figure 8. British Columbia's wildlife tree classification system

  1. Class 2 live, defective trees (e.g., live tree with a dead top) are important as future habitat since they provide recruitment wildlife trees over time. Link to No-work zone 

    A small no-work zone may be required around some live trees with hazardous features (e.g., large dead limbs) to protect workers. (See Module 3G — No-work zone.)

  2. Large, live healthy trees (class 1) within cutblocks (such as veterans) that are reserved can also function as future wildlife trees if retained throughout or across rotations.

  3. Some dead trees can be left in forest operations without no-work-zones provided they have been assessed as safe.

  4. Deciduous trees should be retained wherever practical.

    They can often be a preferred tree for nesting and feeding by some wildlife tree users, and have an added advantage of being less susceptible to windthrow in late autumn and winter when severe windstorms are more common.

  5. Advanced regeneration can also be left on the block to provide structural diversity.

For more information on wildlife tree management,
visit the Wildlife Tree Committee web site
or go to the Wildlife/Danger Tree Assessor's Course.
  next  Next: Individual live tree retention
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Module 3

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