Conserve Genetic Diversity

Ontario’s Forests are diverse and locally adapted to withstand threats and provide many local benefits. Some trees die, but species survive and the forest survives.

Sustainable forests – Sustainable Us!

Follow these links to learn more about conserving genetic diversity.

The Importance of Genetic Diversity

Genetic diversity is the foundation of biodiversity, although too often ignored. For three important reasons, we need to better understand it as we manage our native forests:

  • For ecosystem services – Our forest ecosystems provide many essential services across most of southcentral Ontario’s landscape. Healthy, diverse forests moderate local climate, conserve soil and ground water, enrich soil, and provide economic benefits from logging,
  • For evolutionary capacity – Genetic diversity within a species means that, barring catastrophic events, some individuals will be adapted to withstand pressures and survive, and therefore the species will survive.
  • For economic potential – When we conserve the full breadth of native genetic diversity, we have a greater opportunity to select certain trees to breed for traits which will bring economic benefit.