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Pine Barrens,coastal plain region, c.3,000 sq mi (7,770 sq km), S and SE N.J.; composed chiefly of sandy soils, swamp-edged streams, pine stands, and tracts of cranberries and blueberries. Originally a well-forested area of pine, cedar, and oak, its trees were indiscriminately cut for shipbuilding and charcoal-making until the 1860s, when they were nearly exhausted. A second growth of pine was of poor quality, and most of the region, except for scattered stands, remained bare. Several state forests and Fort Dix, a U.S. army base, are there. On the periphery of the Pine Barrens, suburban development has grown since the 1970s. Efforts to maintain the wilderness have increased as a result of environmentalist action, but such projects remain difficult. There is also a Pine Barrens on Long IslandLong Island
(1990 pop. 6,861,454), 1,723 sq mi (4,463 sq km), 118 mi (190 km) long, and from 12 to 20 mi (19–32 km) wide, SE N.Y.; fourth largest island of the United States and the largest outside Alaska and Hawaii.
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See J. McPhee, The Pine Barrens (1968); R. R. Forman, Pine Barrens: Ecosystem & Landscape (1979).