Juniper forest in danger

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A juniper tree, with its trunk stripped of branches by Pakistanis in need of fuel to warm their homes during the country’s chilly winter season, stands forlornly along a rough road. Photo by UPI Next.

ZIARAT, Dec 5,2013 (Abdul Malik Achakzai / UPI Next) — A 247,000-acre forest of juniper trees, some of which are thousands of years old, in Pakistan’s southwest may soon vanish because of the dearth of government conservation efforts and the felling of trees by villagers seeking fuel.

The forest near Ziarat district in Baluchistan, Pakistan’s largest and poorest province, is the second-largest juniper forest in the world. Its slow-growth trees are estimated to be up to 4,000 to 5,000 years old.

The “most extensive and best-known examples” of the juniperus excelsa species “are found in Ziarat at an elevation ranging from 1,980 to 3,350 meters [6,496 to 10,991 feet] above sea level,” an International Union for Conservation of Nature report states.

Read more  Major Pakistani juniper forest in danger of vanishing – UPI.com.

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