I have been watching the German YouTube series "7 vs Wild" (YouTube here, German Wiki link here). The premise is that 7 participants have to survive for 7 days after being marooned in the Swedish wilderness. Participants are allowed to bring 7 items (e.g. tarp, knife, small fishing kit, ...), but, importantly, no food. The ecosystem is best described as Taiga / boreal forest, with the participants being dropped in the late summer at the shore of a decently sized lake.
Anyone who ever spent some time in the Taiga will know that it can be a very beautiful, but (even in summer) harsh and unforgiving environment, with little (visible) wildlife.
The participants all have to deal with hunger and try to forage for food - but struggle to find much of anything, let alone something that would keep them from starving mid to long-term...
- Blueberries seem abundant, but have very little calories (36 kcal per 100g according to some numbers) - I'm unsure if picking blueberries would actually be bottom-line energy-positive.1
- Some candidates try to fish, but have a hard time finding even a single worm/grub/bug/... to use as bait.
- In the same line, there don't seem to be any insects/grubs one could eat.
- Big game is theoretically present (moose, deer, bears, wolves), but shy and very hard to track, and lacking any hunting equipment a kill is close to impossible.
--> What could one forage in the Taiga, that is actually worth the foraging effort in terms of energy and nutrient value?
(I know that for 7 days you technically don't need any food - so imagine a real survival situation where you'd have to stay put but would not know when rescue arrives.)
1: There is an answer to this question here which talks about blueberry picking, but I'm not convinced. From what we see in the show, it takes participants easily 40-60 minutes to forage an amount of blueberries that looks to be some 200-300g - and that is from what I would call a lush, ripe blueberry field in the wild.