What do we owe to the forests? – Infographics series on natural forest ecosystem services

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Nowadays we can hardly find any natural oak forests in Hungary. Due to forestry and other human influences, our oak forests have almost completely transformed, the former wilderness has disappeared from Europe and Hungary as well. Yet natural forests give us much more than we think: herbs, edible fruits and mushrooms, diverse flora and fauna and refreshing refuge in the summer heat.
Our natural forests also play an important role in the functioning of their environment. They protect the surrounding farmlands from dehydration and strong winds, contribute to the conservation of our drinking water bases, and sequester and store carbon dioxide. In addition, they provide habitat for far more plant and animal species than cultivated forests. It is made up of trees of different sizes, ages and species, many of them are fallen, rotting dead wood in which a lot of special species find refuge. This diversity makes natural forests healthy, which are more successful in tackling the challenges posed by climate change.
In our series of infographics created as part of the Life4Oak Forests project, we show what we owe to natural forests.