The Project

The last European old-growth (“subnatural”) fir-BEech forests: a loNg-term and global stuDY for their better understanding, conServation and management

Baiut Forest, M. Saulnier, 2017

Baiut Forest, L. Larrieu 2017

AAPG2019 BENDYS ANR JC JC
Coordinated by: Vanessa PY-SARAGAGLIA 2020-2023
Scientific evaluation committee CES 03 Human-Environment interactions

BENDYS is an interdisciplinary project focusing on the last European Old-Growth Forests (OGFs) that brings together, for the first time, researchers in Humanities and Social Sciences (sociology, anthropology, archaeology, history, geography) and in Environment and Life Science (ecology, biogeochemistry, geology, biology).

The project is focusing on the last European old-growth fir-beech forests that are today threatened by global warming, unsustainable uses and a lack of global conservation plans. The major issue for their better understanding and conservation is to accurately define their reference state. To tackle this issue, we must study long-term legacies and ongoing impacts of anthropogenic and natural drivers on the structure, functioning and biodiversity of current forest ecosystems. We propose to perform a comparative study on the Eastern Romanian Carpathians, where there are secular forests just classified by UNESCO, and the Northern central Pyrenees, which present the highest density of old-growth forests in Western Europe. To reconstruct their long-term trajectories and characterise the tolerable ones for biodiversity, we propose to combine palaeoecological, ecological, historical and sociological approaches into a multiscalar and systemic research in a retrospective and prospective perspective.