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Temperate broadleaf and mixed forests

Extent of temperate broadleaf and mixed forests
An example of temperate broadleaf and mixed forest in La Mauricie National Park, Quebec.

Temperate broadleaf and mixed forest is a temperate climate terrestrial habitat type defined by the World Wide Fund for Nature, with broadleaf tree ecoregions, and with conifer and broadleaf tree mixed coniferous forest ecoregions.[1]

These forests are richest and most distinctive in central China and eastern North America, with some other globally distinctive ecoregions in the Himalayas, Western and Central Europe, the southern coast of the Black Sea, Australasia, Southwestern South America and the Russian Far East.[1][2][3]


The typical structure of these forests includes four layers.[1]

  • The uppermost layer is the canopy composed of tall mature trees ranging from 30 to 61 m (100 to 200 ft) high. Below the canopy is the three-layered, shade-tolerant understory that is roughly 9 to 15 m (30 to 50 ft) shorter than the canopy.
  • The top layer of the understory is the sub-canopy composed of smaller mature trees, saplings, and suppressed juvenile canopy layer trees awaiting an opening in the canopy.
  • Below the sub-canopy is the shrub layer, composed of low growing woody plants.
  • Typically the lowest growing (and most diverse) layer is the ground cover or herbaceous layer.


In the Northern hemisphere, characteristic dominant broadleaf trees in this biome include oaks (Quercus spp.), beeches (Fagus spp.), maples (Acer spp.), or birches (Betula spp.).[1] The term "mixed forest" comes from the inclusion of coniferous trees as a canopy component of some of these forests. Typical coniferous trees include pines (Pinus spp.), firs (Abies spp.), and spruces (Picea spp.). In some areas of this biome, the conifers may be a more important canopy species than the broadleaf species. In the Southern Hemisphere, endemic genera such as Nothofagus and Eucalyptus occupy this biome, and most coniferous trees (members of the Araucariaceae and Podocarpaceae) occur in mixtures with broadleaf species, and are classed as broadleaf and mixed forests.


Temperate broadleaf and mixed forests occur in areas with distinct warm and cool seasons, including climates such as humid continental, humid subtropical, and oceanic, that give them moderate annual average temperatures: 3 to 23 °C (37 to 73 °F). These forests occur in relatively warm and rainy climates, sometimes also with a distinct dry season. A dry season occurs in the winter in East Asia and in summer on the wet fringe of the Mediterranean climate zones. Other areas, such as central eastern North America, have a fairly even distribution of rainfall; annual rainfall is typically over 600 mm (24 in) and often over 1,500 mm (59 in), though it can go as low as 300 mm (12 in) in some parts of the Middle East and close to 6,000 mm (240 in) in the mountains of New Zealand and the Azores. Temperatures are typically moderate except in parts of Asia such as Ussuriland, or the Upper Midwest, where temperate forests can occur despite very harsh conditions with very cold winters.

The climates are typically humid for much of the year, usually appearing in the humid subtropical climate and in the humid continental climate zones to the south of tundra and the generally subarctic taiga. In the Köppen climate classification they are represented respectively by Cfa, Dfa/Dfb southern range and Cfb,[4][5] and more rarely, Csb, BSk and Csa.



Chatham Islands temperate forests New Zealand
Eastern Australian temperate forests Australia
Fiordland temperate forests New Zealand
Nelson Coast temperate forests New Zealand
North Island temperate forests New Zealand
Northland temperate kauri forests New Zealand
Stewart Island / Rakiura temperate forests New Zealand
Richmond temperate forests New Zealand
Southeast Australia temperate forests Australia
Southland temperate forests New Zealand
Tasmanian Central Highland forests Australia
Tasmanian temperate forests Australia
Tasmanian temperate rain forests Australia
Westland temperate forests New Zealand


Indomalayan temperate broadleaf and mixed forests
Eastern Himalayan broadleaf forests Bhutan, India, Nepal
Northern Triangle temperate forests Myanmar
Western Himalayan broadleaf forests India, Nepal, Pakistan
Palearctic temperate broadleaf and mixed forests
Apennine deciduous montane forests Italy
Atlantic mixed forests Denmark, France, Belgium, Germany, Netherlands
Azores temperate mixed forests Portugal
Balkan mixed forests Bulgaria, Greece, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Turkey
Baltic mixed forests Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Poland
Cantabrian mixed forests Spain, Portugal
Caspian Hyrcanian mixed forests Iran, Azerbaijan
Caucasus mixed forests Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Russia, Turkey, Iran
Celtic broadleaf forests United Kingdom, Ireland
Central Anatolian deciduous forests Turkey
Central China loess plateau mixed forests China
Central European mixed forests Austria, Germany, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Belarus, Czech Republic, Ukraine
Central Korean deciduous forests North Korea, South Korea
Changbai Mountains mixed forests China, North Korea
Changjiang Plain evergreen forests China
Crimean Submediterranean forest complex Russia, Ukraine
Daba Mountains evergreen forests China
Dinaric Mountains mixed forests Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Italy, Montenegro, Serbia, Slovenia, Croatia
East European forest steppe Bulgaria, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Ukraine
Eastern Anatolian deciduous forests Turkey
English Lowlands beech forests United Kingdom
Euxine-Colchic deciduous forests Bulgaria, Georgia, Turkey
Hokkaido deciduous forests Japan
Huang He Plain mixed forests China
Madeira evergreen forests Portugal
Manchurian mixed forests China, North Korea, Russia, South Korea
Nihonkai evergreen forests Japan
Nihonkai montane deciduous forests Japan
North Atlantic moist mixed forests Ireland, United Kingdom
Northeast China Plain deciduous forests China
Pannonian mixed forests Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Ukraine, Croatia
Po Basin mixed forests Italy
Pyrenees conifer and mixed forests France, Spain, Andorra
Qin Ling Mountains deciduous forests China
Rodope montane mixed forests Bulgaria, Greece, North Macedonia, Serbia
Sarmatic mixed forests Russia, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Belarus
Sichuan Basin evergreen broadleaf forests China
South Sakhalin-Kurile mixed forests Russia
Southern Korea evergreen forests South Korea
Taiheiyo evergreen forests Japan
Taiheiyo montane deciduous forests Japan
Tarim Basin deciduous forests and steppe China
Ussuri broadleaf and mixed forests Russia
West Siberian broadleaf and mixed forests Russia
Western European broadleaf forests Switzerland, Austria, France, Germany, Czech Republic
Zagros Mountains forest steppe Iran, Iraq, Turkey


Allegheny Highlands forests United States
Appalachian mixed mesophytic forests United States
Appalachian–Blue Ridge forests United States
Central U.S. hardwood forests United States
East Central Texas forests United States
Eastern forest–boreal transition Canada, United States
Eastern Great Lakes lowland forests Canada, United States
Gulf of St. Lawrence lowland forests Canada
Middle Atlantic coastal forests United States
Mississippi lowland forests United States
New England–Acadian forests Canada, United States
Northeastern coastal forests United States
Ozark Mountain forests United States
Sierra Madre Occidental pine–oak forests Mexico, United States
Sierra Madre Oriental pine–oak forests Mexico, United States
Southeastern mixed forests United States
Southern Great Lakes forests Canada, United States
Upper Midwest forest–savanna transition United States
Western Great Lakes forests Canada, United States
Willamette Valley forests United States

Juan Fernandez Islands temperate forests Chile
Magellanic subpolar forests Argentina, Chile
San Félix–San Ambrosio Islands temperate forests Chile
Valdivian temperate forests Argentina, Chile

See also


  1. ^ a b c d  This article incorporates text available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license. World Wide Fund for Nature. "Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forest Ecoregions". Archived from the original on 1 April 2011. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  2. ^ Zhao, Ji; Zheng, Guangmei; Wang, Huadong; Xu, Jialin, eds. (1990). The natural history of China. New York: McGraw-Hill Publishing Company.
  3. ^ Martin, WH; Boyce, SG; Echternacht, AC, eds. (1993). Biodiversity of the southeastern United States: Lowland terrestrial communities. New York: John Wiley and Sons.
  4. ^ F, Beck, H. E., Zimmermann, N. E., McVicar, T. R., Vergopolan, N., Berg, A., & Wood, E. (6 November 2018), English: Köppen–Geiger climate classification map.Français: Carte de classification climatique de Köppen–Geiger., retrieved 6 August 2019((citation)): CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  5. ^ Terpsichores (28 October 2012), English: Temperate broadleaf and mixed forests, retrieved 6 August 2019
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Temperate broadleaf and mixed forests
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