Within your plot, select a rectangular zone for each patrol and mark it with flagging (be sure to remove flags when the activity is over). The size of the plot will depend on the density of tree cover. Ideally, each area will contain 20 to 30 trees and include both conifers and deciduous varieties.
Make available source materials to help Scouts identify the trees: field guides for your area; publications prepared by your provincial parks ministry or forestry association.
Instructions to Patrols
Examine the trees in the area assigned to you and answer the questions as best you can. You have 30 minutes to complete the task.
- How many trees are there in your area?
- How many are coniferous?
- How many are deciduous?
- List the different species of trees in your area and the number of each species.
- Which tree in your area is tallest? How tall is it?
- Which tree is shortest? What height is it?
- Do any of the trees show evidence of disease? If so, record observed signs.
- Do any of the trees show damage inflicted by people? If so, what sort of damage?
- What evidence do you see that trees support other forms of life?
- Which tree do you think is the oldest? Why?
- Are there any zones in your area where no trees are growing? What do you think causes this?
- Is the undergrowth near the base of all the trees the same throughout your area? If not, what differences do you observe?
- Are the trees in your area equally spaced? If not, what factors do you think contributes to the irregular spacing?
- Which tree contains the greatest volume of wood? What do you estimate as the number of cubic metres of wood it contains? The following formula for calculating the volume of a cylinder will help you make the estimation: volume equals 3.12 times the radius squared times the height.
- Do you think your area would be improved if some or all of the trees were cut down? Please give reasons to support your answer.