“A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself. Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the air and giving fresh strength to our people.”
A forest, also referred to as a wood or the woods, is an area with a high density of trees. As with cities, depending on various cultural definitions, what is considered a forest may vary significantly in size and have different classifications according to how and what of the forest is composed?
These plant communities cover approximately 9.4 percent of the Earth’s surface, though they once covered much more, in many different regions and function as habitats for organisms, hydrologic flow modulators, and soil conservers, constituting one of the most important aspects of the biosphere. Although forests are classified primarily by trees, the concept of a forest ecosystem includes additional species as well as physical and chemical processes such as energy flow and nutrient cycling.
Forests are central to all human life because they provide a diverse range of resources: they store carbon, aid in regulating the planetary climate, purify water and mitigate natural hazards such as floods. Forests also contain roughly 90 percent of the world’s terrestrial biodiversity.
Here is a list of 5 bizarre Forests:
Ancient Wuda Forest
In February of 2012, American and Chinese scientists are flabbergasted after discovering a giant 298-million-year-old forest buried intact under a coal mine near Wuda, in Inner Mongolia, China.
They are calling it the Pompeii of the Permian period because, like the ancient Roman city, it was covered and preserved by volcanic ash.
Like Pompeii, this swamp forest is so perfectly maintained that scientists know where every plant originally was. This has allowed them to map it and to create the images above. This extraordinary finding “is like Pompeii”, according to University of Pennsylvania paleobotanist Hermann Pfefferkorn, who characterized it as “a time capsule.”
It’s marvelously preserved. We can stand there and find a branch with the leaves attached, and then we find the next branch and the next branch and the next branch. And then we find the stump from the same tree. That’s really exciting.
They are in fact finding entire trees and plants exactly as they were at the time of the volcanic eruption, just like archeologists in Pompeii found humans, animals and buildings at the base of Mount Vesuvius, near Naples, in the Italian region of Campania. Except Pompeei was buried in AD 79 and this forest was covered in ash 298 million years ago, during the Permian period.
The researchers discovered the 10,763-square-foot (1000-square-meter) area hidden under a coal mine using heavy industrial machinery. They believe that this frozen-in-time fossilized forest was covered under gigantic amounts of ash that fell from the sky for days.
So far, they have identified six groups of trees, some of them 80 feet tall. Some of them are Sigillaria and Cordaites, but they also found large groups of a type called Noeggerathiales, which are now completely extinct.
During the Permian, which extends from 299 to 251 million years ago, there weren’t conifers or flowers. Plants reproduced like ferns, using spores, and the modern continents were still joined in a single mass of land called Pangaea. This geologic period happened at the end of the Paleozoic era, after the Carboniferous.
During this time there were also animals. This is when the first groups of mammals, turtles, lepidosaurs and archosaurs started to roam the Earth. Scientist believe that the Permian—and with it the entire Paleozoic era—ended with the largest mass extinction ever, which obliterated 90 percent of the marine and 70 percent of the terrestrial species.
After this event, the Mesozoic era started with the Triassic period. That’s when the first true mammals evolved, the pterosaurs flew for the first time and the archosaurs’ rose to dominate Earth.
Pfefferkorn worked on the project with Jun Wang of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yi Zhang of Shenyang Normal University and Zhuo Feng of Yunnan University. The results of their findings have been published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Right in the heart of the Ardeal region, in a place with an epoch appearance, we can, probably, find one of the most mysterious locations of Romania. A lot of ink has flown on the subject of the Hoia-Baciu Forest, just as many steps of curious people have passed this gate “between worlds” with the hope of catching a bit of paranormal. Some of them have really had some inexplicable experiences that make even the most courageous people shiver. The scientific explorers can not help it and seem to be tied and bound, leaving the speculations, that inflame the imagination of the paranormal phenomena fans, free.
The Hoia-Baciu Forest is, for sure, one of the most famous locations in Romania, where a series of inexplicable phenomena have been investigated and analyzed. It is called “the Bermuda Triangle of Transylvania”.
It has become famous since 1968. However, the locals have known of its existence since time out of mind. They have kept avoiding it as it is considered an evil place where strange things happen. They all have known that once they have got among the trees, they are able to hear the rustle that seems to come from another world where all the fears of the human subconscious come to life and appear in the way of the ones that are foolish enough to venture into such a place. The locals have noticed on their own that, once they have got into the woods for chopping wood, mowing the grass or picking blueberries or flowers, something strange happens to all of them.
Even from the first steps into the wood, they were hit by inexplicable states of nausea, anxiety, headaches and, sometimes, even burns on their skin. The Hoia-Baciu Forest was a taboo subject for a long time, because people were afraid to even talk about it since the place was considered to be cursed and even dwelled by the Devil.
Alexandru Sift, a biologist started to study those paranormal phenomena that were supposed to happen in the oak wood. He was seduced by the fame of this forest and intrigued by all the incredible stories he was hearing from the locals. So, he started going on many trips in the Hoia-Baciu Forest, noticing that, every time, among the trees, some strange shadows were accompanying him.
Being brave, he continued his research and he even managed to take some pictures of the “shadows”. Much to his surprise, even from the development of the images, he could notice, besides the shadows, some other forms, lights and figures that could not be noticed by the human eyes. Since then, many research workers were lured to explore that place.
On the 18th of August 1968, a 45 yeared-military technician called Emil Barnea, ignoring the warning of the villagers, went to spend some resting time during the weekend, away from the stressful life of the city. He was accompanied by his girlfriend, Zamfira Matea and other two family friends that didn’t want to reveal their names. Around 1:00 pm, while he was looking for some wood to set fire to, he was suddenly called by his friends.
That was the time when Emil Barnea saw what appeared to be an UFO that was flying with little gear above the forest, without making any noise. The strange flying object started to suddenly shine, making an upsetting tactical exercise in the air. Without any warning, the object accelerated to the sky in an oblique direction. Following it through the view finder of a digital camera, he managed to take 3 shots. After the development of the images, the technician from the city of Cluj contemplated the pictures that were considered, in time, by the international specialists in studying the UFO phenomena – “the clearest images of a UFO taken in Romania and some of the most beautiful ones of a UFO ever.”
Afterwards, Emil Barnea contacted Florin Gheorghita si Ion Hobana, the most famous Romanian UFO scientists that confirmed the authenticity of the pictures. After the pictures were filtered by the authorities of the time, they were taken over by Agerpres, the national agency of press and they became public even overboard. The fame of the pictures reached the climax when they were introduced by the professor C. S. Vonkeviziczky in the UFO International Congress in Acapulco. The pictures were immediately taken over by the books and the magazines that were studying the UFO casuistry.
The Hoia-Baciu Forest keeps on being fascinating, especially because of what the witnesses say about the strangest physical sensations, the lights in the middle of the night, the shapes, forms, the strange appearances of human faces, the voices and the different colors. The place has shortly become famous among the paranormal and esoteric events specialists, entire teams of famous scientific explorers from Germany, France, USA and Hungary visiting the Hoia-Baciu Forest even during the communism and managing to catch some inexplicable phenomena.
The Ardennes is a region of extensive forests, rolling hills and ridges in Belgium, Luxembourg, and France. The land is covered by thick forests and rugged terrain. The region is rich in timber, minerals, and wild game. The Ardennes holds a strategic position in Europe. For this reason, a large number of famous battles have been fought on the land. The Ardennes has changed hands on many different occasions. In the 20th century, the Ardennes was thought unsuitable for large-scale military operations, but in both World War I and World War II, Germany successfully gambled on making a passage through the area to attack France.
The Ardennes was the site of three major battles in the 20th century, the Battle of the Ardennes (1914), the Battle of France (1940), and the Battle of the Bulge (1944). During the Battle of the Ardennes, French and German troops literally stumbled into each other on the battlefield due to the thick fog. In the winter of 1944, the Third Reich launched a major offensive through the densely forested Ardennes mountain region of Wallonia in Belgium. The event has become known as the Battle of the Bulge.
Before the Battle of the Bulge, the snow-covered Ardennes was so quiet it was termed “the Ghost Front.” The United States placed its greenest units on the wooded hills, along with combat-shattered troops. Hitler valued the Ardennes and arranged for two full Panzer armies and 300,000 troops to conduct a surprise attack designed to shatter the American front.
Many of the towns in the region were badly damaged during the battle, including the historic city of La Roche-en-Ardenne. The forest wasn’t completely taken back from Nazi rule until early 1945. Today, the beauty of the Ardennes and its wide variety of outdoor activities, including hunting, cycling, walking, canoeing, and historic landmarks make it a popular tourist destination.
Dark Entry Forest
Dudley Town (the Village of the Damned) is a ghost town in Cornwall, Connecticut. It was founded as a small settlement in the mid-1740s and was a thriving community by the 18th century, known as Owlsbury. The town was primarily fueled by the region’s iron industry.
It was a popular place to visit until people started to report strange sightings, unexplained murders, and mass suicides. In some cases, the town residents experienced hallucinations which included demons who commanded them to commit suicide. It was also a regular occurrence for sheep and heard animals to go missing in the town.
Many early settlers of Dudley Town began to think the area was cursed. By the middle of the 20th century, everyone in the town had either died or moved away. Today, Dudley Town looks like it did when Thomas Griffis first settled it some 250 years ago. It is a very thick forest with rocky terrain and it sits in the shadow of three separate mountains: Bald Mountain, Woodbury Mountain, and The Coltsfoot Triplets.
Because of the dense and tall woods, the forest has been given the name “Dark Entry Forest.” The land is not officially located in a Connecticut state forest, but sits on private land near the Mohawk State Forest and Mohawk Trail.
The ruins of Dudley Town and the Dark Entry Forest are patrolled by the Dark Entry Forest group, which prosecutes anyone who trespasses on the land. Hundreds of people have been arrested for visiting the site.
The area is also known for a large collection of orbs, unexplained lights, and bizarre sounds. Similar to other strange forests, visitors claim that the trees are unusually quiet and without wildlife. Contemporary researchers have suggested that the town may have succumbed to mass hysteria or that the groundwater could have been contaminated with lead which caused the deaths.
Trillemarka – Rollagsfjell
Trillemarka – Rollagsfjell is a 147 km² (57 sq mi) nature reserve located in Buskerud, Norway. It was created on December 13, 2002 and is located in the mountain areas between Nore in Numedal and Solevann in Sigdal. Trillemarka – Rollagsfjell holds the last ancient wilderness forests of Norway. The land has all the qualities of the original Norwegian forests, including untouched valleys, rivers, lakes, and very old trees. Trillemarka – Rollagsfjell is home to 93 red list and endangered species.
Trillemarka – Rollagsfjell holds a large amount of animals that are dependent on the forest dynamics. The area is one of the few untouched woodlands in Norway. Some of the endangered species that frequent the forest are the Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Tree-toed Woodpecker, Siberian Jay, Stock Dove, and Golden Eagle.
The forest is also home to endangered lichens, mosses, and fungi. Currently, about 75% of Trillemarka – Rollagsfjell has been protected by the government, and there is a controversy in Norway over how much of the remaining land should be set aside for future generations. It appears that Norway is lagging behind neighboring countries in forest protection.