Natural Lands - the magazine of Natural Lands spring-summer 2020 issue - Page 7

NATURAL LANDS . SPRING/SUMMER 2020 5 NJ Trees on the Brink Excerpted with permission from a January, 2019, edition of the Philadelphia Inquirer. Article written by Frank Kummer, photos by David Swanson. Dark water formed an eddy around Steve Eisenhauer’s boots as they sank into the muck at the base of a 90-foot black gum tree so old, its roots were deep in this ground when the Pilgrims landed. Scientists estimate the age of black gums in an old-growth forest surrounded by Bear Swamp in Cumberland County, N.J., ranges from 400 to 500 years, making it among the oldest trees in the oldest forest of its kind in the Northeast. But sea-level rise fueled by warmer oceans and sinking land is pushing saltwater ever closer to the trees… For the full article, please visit: Steve Eisenhauer at the refuge where saltwater is pushing closer to trees.