Black Oak's Blog

Sonoma's Coastal TreesNational Geographic has an article describing the rich diversity of our Norther California coastal forests. The whole article isn't too long and worth a read. Click here.


When you think of the Northern California Coastal Forests, think big. This ecoregion is home to some of the largest trees on Earth, the redwoods. And on uplands where fire disturbance was once more common, a diversity of other big trees mix with the giant redwoods. These include Douglas fir, grand fir, western red hemlock, Sitka spruce, western red cedar, tanoak, bigleaf maple, California bay, and Port Orford cedar. Under these magnificent trees lies a rich understory of herbaceous plants, shrubs, treelets, ferns, and fungi. And within these forests, a great diversity of animal life includes bears, fishers, pine martens, and numerous warblers. The endangered marbled murrelet, a seabird, nests in mature forest canopies. Pacific giant salamanders and red-bellied newts scurry across the moist forest floor, while silver salmon and steelhead trout breed in coastal rivers and streams. Within the habitats created by ancient redwood trees, you can also find highly specialized beetles, spiders, millipedes, and freshwater mussels. One of the most famous residents of the Northern California Coastal Forests is the bright yellow-orange banana slug.

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