I’ve been exploring areas of relict forest here in Alabama trying to understand the species that hang on for thousands of years while dying out elsewhere. One such area is here where I live with large numbers of Canadian Hemlock still growing. This is a relict population left over from the last ice age. Hemlock adelgid is decimating trees throughout the eastern U.S. so populations will disappear over the next few dozen years.
There is also a relict population roughly centered on Selma Alabama that includes a large number of Carya Myristiciformis. I searched through the woods south of Selma on the Dallas/Wilcox county line and found a few dozen trees plus several scattered trees throughout the area. There are also a large number of Southern Sugar Maple aka Acer Floridanum in that area. I am not knowledgeable about oak species but there are several including a few I have never seen before. One that I am familiar with is Swamp White Oak which I have seen several trees and found acorns the size of ping pong balls.
I searched diligently for American Chestnut sprouts but so far have not found any surviving. I know they grew in the area 150 years ago so it is probable a few of them are still alive.
Anyone else interested in rare forest species that are vital for wildlife but mostly ignored in the modern world?