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17. Oct 2022

Hokkaido Trivia – Shelters for Endangered Species

When you travel Hokkaido, you’ll come across many fields with dark green windbreak forests.  These forests can be as wide as 180m and some are managed by the local government. 

They have another role besides preventing strong wind into the field.  They also serve as “shelters” especially for the endangered species.      

The forests must also be maintained regularly by replacing the old trees to new ones and cutting down the grass to keep its role as windshields.  At the same time, the maintenance allows vegetation of plants that need more sunlight to grow, resulting in sheltering wider variety of wildlife. 

Windbreak forests, big or small, is significant in Hokkaido that interpret the island’s history of cultivation and agriculture. Some of those in eastern Hokkaido are designated as Hokkaido’s Heritage.

Like I always say, take yourself for a drive into the rural parts of Hokkaido. Traveling in Hokkaido is even more interesting when you think of its history that is hidden in the landscape.

rf (1) Sep 1, 2022 morning show on NHK, national broadcasting station
rf (2) Local Independent Administrative Agency Hokkaido Research Organization