Individual study: The effects of restoring a conifer Plantation on an Ancient Woodland Site (PAWS) in the UK on the habitat and local population of the hazel dormouse (Muscardinus avellanarius)
Trout R.C., Brooks S.E., Rudlin P. & Neil J. (2012) The effects of restoring a conifer Plantation on an Ancient Woodland Site (PAWS) in the UK on the habitat and local population of the hazel dormouse (Muscardinus avellanarius). European Journal of Wildlife Research, 58, 635-643
This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.
Fell trees in groups, leaving surrounding forest unharvested
A study in 2003 of a forest in Worcestershire, UK (Trout et al. 2012) found that when trees were felled in large groups with surrounding forest unaffected, there was less damage to artificial hazel dormouse Muscardinus avellanarius nests than when trees were felled in small groups or thinned throughout. A lower proportion of artificial nests was damaged during large group felling (31%) than small group felling (62–66%) or thinning (73%). Non-native Corsican pines Pinus nigra were cleared from one third of the area of each of four plots (3 ha each) in a forest undergoing restoration to ancient woodland vegetation. Plot treatments, executed in late autumn/winter 2003, were clearance of small groups (12–14 trees) using chainsaws, clearance of small groups using a mechanised harvester, thinning throughout using a harvester and large group fells (c.0.4 ha each) using a harvester. Artificial dormouse nests comprised spheres of florists’ “oasis” (7–10 cm diameter) on the ground mimicking natural nests.
(Summarised by Nick Littlewood )