Stakeholder Perceptions on the Need for Updated Tree Species Distribution Maps
Tree species distributions presented as range maps are powerful tools for forest‐based decision‐making processes. In the United States, Silvics of North America is a well‐known reference for over 200 tree species. However, the current range maps are likely outdated due to changes in land use, advancements in technology, shifts in plant hardiness zones due to climate change, and shifting societal values that influence the development of these resources. Therefore, a survey was distributed to two stakeholder groups, registered foresters in four states and members of several professional organizations, to gain insight into whether Silvics of North America range maps should be updated. Although the survey delivery method varied between the two survey sampling frames, the opinions on updating species range maps between the two stakeholder groups were similar. Both groups indicated that updating the current range maps would be valuable and would best be informed by remote sensing, national field inventories, and expert insight, and by adding color and perhaps importance classes.