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Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens

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Map Legend & Subregion List

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NameColor on MapEPA Code*
Cape Cod/Long Island84a
Pine Barrens84b
Barrier Islands/Coastal Marshes84c
Inner Coastal Plain84d

* This code refers to the US EPA's Level 4 ecoregion codes for the continental U.S., see here.

About the Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens

The Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens is a region along the East Coast of the United States encompassing the pine barrens of New Jersey, Long Island, New York, and in Massachussets, Cape Cod and nearby islands.

This region has a humid continental climate moderated slightly by its low altitude and proximity to the ocean. The terrain is slightly more irregular than that of the Middle Atlantic Coastal Plain to the south, but flatter than the Northeastern Coastal Zone. The underlying substrate is sedimentary; soils consist of gravel, sand, silt, and clay. In spite of the high rainfall in this area, many soils are poor at retaining water and create locally-dry conditions and fire-prone ecosystems. At the same time, the flat nature of this area creates poorly-drained areas and abundant wetlands.

Vegetation cover is mostly pine-oak forest, with pitch pine being a dominant species. Historically, other forest types occurred inland, including mixed oak forests; few of these forests remain, but much of the pine-oak and pine-dominated forests remain. Coastal areas have unique woodland communities near the dunes, and there are also some swamps with Atlantic white cedar.

References

1. Wiken, E., Griffith, G. "North American Terrestrial Ecoregions - Level III", Commission for Environmental Cooperation, (2011) Web.