They occur in China, North America, the Himalayas, southern Europe and the Far East and into the pacific islands of Australia and New Zealand
|Global distribution of temperate broadleaf and mixed forest as determined by Olson et al., 2001.|
The vegetation may be evergreen or deciduous, with deciduous species including plants such as Oak, Beech, Birch and Maple. Compared with other ecosystems around the world, the diversity of temperate rainforest is still relativity high but generally less than rainforests of tropical and subtropical origins. Diversity is also greater closer towards the forest floor, and most species tend to have quite a wide geographical range.
Although individual species within temperate rainforest ecosystems may be particularly sensitive to damage, as a whole, temperate rainforest are quite resilient. Additionally, as many temperate rainforests occur on rugged, elevated landscapes, they are less likely to be logged, mined or converted for agriculture and urbanisation.
Olson, D., Dinerstein, E., Wikramanayake, E., Burgess, N., Powell, G., Underwood, E., D'amico, J., Itoua, I., Strand, H., Morrison, J., Loucks, C., Allnutt, T., Ricketts, T., Kura, Y. Lamoreux, J., Wettengel, W., Hedao, P., Kassem, K. (2001) Terrestrial Ecoregions of the World: A New Map of Life on Earth: A new global map of terrestrial ecoregions provides an innovative tool for conserving biodiversity.
BioScience 51, 933–938, Reference and more information