The human context: Land ownership, resource uses, and social dynamicsThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
The forests and grasslands of the Eastern United States have been subject to more than two centuries of episodic change, generally characterized by forest clearing, agricultural use, abandonment, reforestation, and recovery. Today, rapid colonization of forests and other rural lands by people, the spread of many floral and faunal nonnative invasive species and, in some places, structural changes in forest product companies continue to alter forests. Historical legacies and ongoing disturbances define a complex landscape in the Eastern United States where no land is without substantial human influence. Opportunities for and the practice of forest management and fuels treatments are heavily influenced by this human history and by the human context of forest settings.