American Forests has been working on-the-ground for nearly three decades to restore and expand wildlife habitat that supports hundreds of species of flora and fauna threatened by climate change and development.
Historically, federal programs and resources often do not address ecosystems as a whole and do not consider the interconnectedness of the different ecosystems. The resulting degradation and fragmentation of these areas can lead to species becoming threatened or endangered.
Experts estimate that species are now going extinct at a rate 1,000 times higher than from natural factors alone, and with changing climate, the spread of invasive, non-native species is crowding out native plants and animals from their preferred habitat.
More than 5 million terrestrial species depend on forests for their survival.
A square kilometer of forest can house more than 1,000 species.
Recognizing the importance of healthy forests for thriving wildlife populations, American Forests’ efforts are focused on two areas:
Strategic Habitat Restoration
Working in targeted ecosystems, American Forests focuses on rebuilding habitat by planting native trees and understory infrastructure. From longleaf pine forests for gopher tortoises and red-cockaded woodpeckers in the Southeastern U.S. to jack pines for Kirtland’s warbler in Michigan, we have brought species back from the brink of extinction to survive and thrive in sustainable forests.
Advancing Conservation Policy
From providing public comments to advocating through dynamic coalitions, American Forests is making a difference for the threatened and endangered wildlife that rely on forests for survival. Our Forest Advocates also help impact legislation by sending letters to public officials through the American Forests Action Center.
As some members of Congress look to update the Endangered Species Act (ESA), American Forests and our partners created the ESA Toolkit to help constituents voice their support for ensuring the legislation remains intact.