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Forests - Europe

The Last Ancient Forests of Europe combine Europe's few remaining tracts of ancient forest in Scandinavia with the adjoining forest of European Russia (from the western flanks of the Ural mountains). These boreal forests represent Europe's last remaining intact ancient forest.

A reindeer in the Lappi reinder herding co-operative in Finland.

These forests have ensured the survival of numerous plant and animal species, including bears, flying squirrels and the highly endangered eagle owl.

These ancient boreal forests are also home to tens of thousands of indigenous peoples.

Living forests form a central part of Saami culture. Old growth forests are of crucial importance for reindeer herding and should not be logged for pulp mills under any circumstances. In the Saami culture we have been taught to respect forests ever since our childhood.

Pekka Aikio, President of the Saami Parliament, Finland.

The reindeer-herding Saami live in northern parts of Sweden, Finland and Norway as well as the Murmansk region of Russia.

The forests also support the traditional cultures of the Komi and Nenets (or Samoyeds) who inhabit the Arkhangelsk Region and Komi Republic of European Russia.

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