In old growth forest, that has large animals like deer, bears etc., specifically in the wildest areas of Pennsylvania (though if estimates are available for other areas with some similarities, I will happily take them), what is the typical density of game trails, at least to an order of magnitude?

That is, say you go off a hiking trail and walk for a hundred miles in a random direction through the forest, how many recognizable game trails would you expect to cross? Only one or two? One every couple of miles?

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    Based on my limited experience in a couple of countries, I would say this is incredibly locale-specific. I think you'd need to narrow it down not just to country, but also locality (uplands, coastal, steppe, continental, etc)
    – Rory Alsop
    Jun 16, 2022 at 20:14
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    What Rory said. In France? Limited, not many deers, due to hunters. Same terrain in Germany? More deers, due to different hunting regulations. This is not answerable as such. Also, "old growth forest" is either a loose term or applies to an incredibly small proportion of the forests in North America and Europe - there is very little pristine, virgin, forest. Jun 17, 2022 at 1:54
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    @ItalianPhilosophers4Monica, even where "old growth" is not defined loosely, it might not mean what people assume. For instance, "While the government [of British Columbia] asserted that 23% of the province’s standing forests were old-growth (51,000 square miles), in reality less than 1% (1,544 square miles) existed as the towering, centuries-old red cedar and western hemlock inland rainforests that define biodiverse old-growth." news.mongabay.com/2021/04/…
    – Juhasz
    Jun 17, 2022 at 16:49
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    @RoryAlsop Okay, this is actually for a science fiction story where the protagonists hop sideways in time to a world similar to Earth but where humans never evolved, the region in question being basically the equivalent of Pennsylvania. Obviously, that's not directly answerable as such, but I'm hoping there are similar actual regions that can serve as proxies to at least an order of magnitude estimate. What about, say, the wildest existing regions of present-day Pennsylvania?
    – rwallace
    Jun 17, 2022 at 21:31
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    You might have better luck getting answers that are helpful to you on worldbuilding stack exchange in a question with more context of your story.
    – noah
    Jun 20, 2022 at 16:52


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