Forest health and vitality depends on the ecosystem’s ability to recover from, or adapt to, disturbances. Many disturbances are natural components of forest ecosystems, but some may overwhelm ecosystem functions, altering their patterns and processes.
If a forest ecosystem’s health and vitality declines, this may have significant economic and ecological consequences.
The more we know about different threats to forest ecosystems, the better we can develop management strategies to minimise and mitigate the risks. Maintaining forest ecosystem health and vitality is the foundation of sustainable forest management.
The key threats to New Zealand’s forest ecosystems are: