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World's Most Endangered Forest

I am going to try to get you interested in the world’s most endangered forest!!!!! If you were to be asked what you thought the most endangered foresets on our planet were, many of you would say something like the Amazon, the lungs of the world or maybe something like Redwood forests of California - you wouldn’t be close. The Pacific or, Oceania, contains forests that have been reduced to less than 1% of their historic range. Funded by the National Geographic Society, this documentary examines the biodiversity of woody plants (trees, shrubs, woody vines) and local culture of some of the Pacific’s most threatened regions; New Caledonia, Fiji, and Hawaii. With 90% endemism, 40% of the plants on the Federal Endangered Species List, and most of the remaining fragments smaller than a football field, the Hawaiian Tropical Dry Forests are currently the world’s most endangered forest. This documentary uses imagery, science, and humor to educate the general public. I encourage the use of the information this documentary provides to make decisions concerning the management of the few remaining fragments of forest in the Pacific.

Tom Gillespie

Professor at UCLA


This documentary was created by Thomas W. Gillespie, a Professor in the Department of Geography at UCLA.  He is currently undertaking biogeographic research on native plant distributions on islands in the Pacific.  He has one of the highest teaching ratings at UCLA because of his passion for biogeography, humor, and concern about student learning.  Spencer W. Rothermel is an artist and filmmaker.  After graduating Ithaca College in 2004 he moved to southern California to pursue a dream.  A dream of creating meaningful and purpose-filled work that would have a real influence on the world we share.  Although experienced on both sides of the camera and with canvas, this is his first role as producer.  Funding from National Geographic Society, National Science Foundation, and NASA made this documentary possible.




World's Most Endangered Forest
World's Most Endangered Forest