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Northern hardwoods crown

As you can see, the canopy in this hardwood stand is nearly completely occupied with crowns. The crowns of the trees are no only touching, but significantly intermingled and growing together.  This is a condition of a severe competition for light in which trees with larger crowns (dominant trees) will overtake trees with smaller crowns (co-dominant trees) next to them, slowly killing the smaller crowned trees.  The Northern hardwood cover type has a complex Ecology that involves too many components to include for the context of this gallery. The one focused on here is how light affects the different levels of the forest.