Red spruce forests once dominated the spectacular peaks of the Central Appalachians across West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, Tennessee and North Carolina. In the nineteenth century the mountains were heavily logged and wildfires further devastated the forests. Hardwood species grew back in many areas, but red spruce did not recover as readily and this habitat was reduced dramatically.
Now The Nature Conservancy and partners are working to restore this special ecosystem that is home to hundreds of rare species. By focusing on the whole ecosystem, we’re beginning to bring back these forests and the special communities of plants and animals that depend on them.