Tree Tuesday

Photo by Biosphoto/Almay from Atlas Obscura

Meet Big Lonely Doug, one of the last old-growth trees left in Canada.

Big Lonely Doug—named after its species, the Douglas fir—stands tall among a clearing, a solitary specimen surrounded by stumps and logging debris. It soars about 230 feet high and its trunk is as big as a living room. Local conservationists estimate it to be between 750 and 1,200 years old.
Despite the region’s booming logging industry (a staggering 99 percent of the old-growth Douglas firs in British Colombia have been cut down) a logger spared Big Lonely Doug from being felled in 2012. No one is quite sure why this particular mature tree was saved. It turns out it is the second-largest Douglas fir in Canada.
Big Lonely Doug still stands tall, now a sad but majestic symbol of the disappearing old-growth forests of British Colombia, and the ongoing fight to save them.

You can visit Big lonely Doug, but you’ll have to hike the last 1.5 km to the site. He lives near Port Renfrew, B.C., and perhaps he’d like a bit of company, as long as you’re polite and respectful of his age and his home. There are more photos at the link below.


Story via: Atlas Obscura


  1. says

    Are there any regulations in place in Canada that say that deforested areas must be re-planted or any regulations regarding their reforestation at all?

    Shortly after the fall of the Iron Curtain there was (justified, as it turns out) fear that privatizing forests will lead to their quick disappearance, so laws were enacted that say after a forest is logged, it must be replanted within a few years. The law, as it turns out, must now be adjusted due to climate change (the prescribed species are not well suited for what is now happening), but it did successfully prevent widespread deforestation in the Czech republic in the name of profits.

  2. rojmiller says

    In Canada, most of the forest land is owned by individual provinces (“Crown Land”). Each province has their own regulations regarding reforestation. Reforestation of some sort is required, but the result may not be the same type of forest as what was cut down (or burnt, as in the case of wildfire, which also affects large forest areas). E.g., in Ontario a cut or burnt jack pine or black spruce forest may regenerate naturally to a trembling aspen forest. Replanting requirements to the previous species present on the site varies by province. In most of Canada the forest will regenerate itself naturally, just not necessarily to the previous species.

  3. chigau (違う) says

    In that picture up top, all of the darker green things on the ground are transplanted seedling trees.

  4. says

    Another question: is there something like a “memorable tree” in Canada and could this tree be awarded it? Here in CZ several hundred years old trees are usually protected from felling or damaging and the fines are not trivial. Such memorable trees are documented and each is marked with a plaque and state emblem. There is a memorable circa 300 years old oak, for example, just a few km from my house (I will take pictures when the opportunity arises) and there are over 5500 such trees in CZ.

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