I know for certain- there is life after death. At least for large trees.
Once a thriving Sugar Maple in my woods, this towering relic is still a vector for a multitude of life forms both small and large. Most go unseen. Fungus, slime-molds, tiny spiders and ants populate and colonize the decaying tissues. Wood boring insects, centipedes and beetle grubs enliven the bark layers, creating an irresistible attraction for birds.
Just as a whale-fall in the ocean provides a unique habitat for a league of species, the "tree-fall" in my yard is worthy of much more study.
To learn more about habitats found in your own back yard, join us on March 3rd at Muskingham Valley Gardeners' "Spring Fever" Home Gardening Symposium. You can find all the details HERE.