1. Land with tree crown cover (or equivalent stocking level) of more than 10 percent and area of more than 0.5 ha. The trees should be able to reach a minimum height of 5 m at maturity in situ. May consist either of closed forest formations where trees of various storeys and undergrowth cover a high proportion of the ground; or of open forest formations with a continuous vegetation cover in which tree crown cover exceeds 10 percent. Young natural stands and all plantations established for forestry purposes which have yet to reach a crown density of 10 percent or tree height of 5 m are included under forest, as are areas normally forming part of the forest area which are temporarily unstocked as a result of human intervention or natural causes but which are expected to revert to forest (UN.ECE/FAO, 1997).
Includes: Forest nurseries and seed orchards that constitute an integral part of the forest; forest roads, cleared tracts, firebreaks and other small open areas within the forest; forest in national parks, nature reserves and other protected areas such as those of special environmental, scientific, historical, cultural or spiritual interest; windbreaks and shelter-belts or trees with an area of more than 0.5 ha and a width of more than 20 m. Rubberwood plantations and cork oak stands are included. Excludes land predominantly used for agricultural purposes.
2. In other disciplines forests are defined as a large tract of land with a fairly dense growth of trees. This differs in degree from woodland, which tends to refer to more open forest (Timberlake and Van der Poel, 1979, modified).
Example: In the FAO Land Cover Classification a range of 60
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