Forests cover 50 percent of Oregon’s land area. The humid western part of the state, including all of the Pacific Border province, is mostly forested, as are parts of the Blue Mountains. Near the coast the forests are of spruce and hemlock, trees that tolerate salt spray well. Most of the Oregon Coast Range and the slopes of the Cascade Range as far up as 1,200 m (4,000 ft) are covered by Douglas fir and western hemlock. The Douglas fir produces most of Oregon’s lumber. Above the Douglas fir forest in the Cascades are a variety of coniferous trees, which include white fir, grand fir, mountain hemlock, and pine. On the eastern slopes of the Cascades and in parts of the Blue Mountains the forests are dominated by the ponderosa pine and lodgepole pine. The large ponderosa pines grow widely apart. The undergrowth of low shrub and grass that develops between the pines provides nutrients for the development of new trees and is suitable for grazing by wildlife and livestock.
In river valleys and lowlands, some species of deciduous trees, including alder, ash, maple, and white oak, are fairly common. Deciduous trees found in eastern Oregon include cottonwood, aspen, and birch. Juniper, a conifer, is found throughout eastern Oregon. In the high desert of southeastern Oregon, sagebrush and bunchgrass prevail.
Wild animals in Oregon include deer, elk, and antelope, a great variety of small mammals, upland game birds, and migratory fowl. Black-tailed deer are common in western Oregon, from the crest of the Cascades to the sea. Mule deer live mainly in the ponderosa pine forests and in the sagebrush areas of eastern Oregon, and white-tailed deer occur in scattered areas throughout the state.
The Roosevelt elk is found in the western third of the state, and the Rocky Mountain elk is found east of the Cascades, particularly in the Blue Mountains and in the Wallowas. In the southeast are pronghorns, which feed mainly in the sagebrush areas in winter and migrate to the higher areas of the Great Basin in the summer season. Bears, cougars, and coyotes are common in many areas. Smaller mammals include quantities of cottontails and jackrabbits. Beaver are now on the increase. Muskrat, marten, fishers, raccoons, and wildcats are fairly common. Upland game birds include pheasants, bobwhites, valley quail, and mountain quail. Ducks, geese, and other migratory birds, following their flyways, stop in the area of Upper Klamath Lake and around the coastal lakes and other waterways. Oregon has 11 national wildlife refuge areas that protect mammals and migratory fowl. "Oregon" © Emmanuel BUCHOT, Encarta, Wikipedia
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