Petrokas, R. 2016. Appropriate Measures for Retention Forestry. Baltic Forestry 22(2): 382-389 (Review Paper).

   In this review I attempt to reveal the significance of life history and fractal organisation theory for retention forestry. The retention approach has emerged from the recognition that even intense natural disturbances leave biological legacies and spatial heterogeneity in the new forest which contrasts with the simple and homogeneous environment that is often the outcome of traditional harvesting practices. The review presents some insight into the understanding of a complex, self-organising dynamical system that supports organismal units being its branches and leaves in a tree, or a wide variety of flora and fauna in a forest. It seems that the formation of a scale-invariant structure of life cycle events may fit in the general terms of homeostasis, lifespan and fitness, so it could be argued that habitat quality and integrity of forest communities should be evaluated based on the assessment of organism-specific effects and responses in ecosystem functioning. Moreover, biological legacies defined as biologically created patterns that persist from the pre-disturbance ecosystem and influence recovery processes in the post-disturbance ecosystem should include organically derived measures of ecosystem integrity, such as habitat quality.

Keywords: life history, fractal organisation, retention forestry.