Friday, 5 December 2014

Working hard on the run up to Christmas means lots of free woodchip around!

The reserves fantastic team of volunteers have been working hard alongside some woodland contractors to improve the woodland and heathland areas on site. Both teams are carrying out tree thinning on various part of the reserve that have been chosen due to their proximity to heathland areas.

Much of this is young woodland that has grown over what was once important Breckland heath, and now we are returning these areas to heath and wood pasture by removing the younger saplings and trees. By doing this on lots of small areas adjacent to the heath it allows the heathland to gradually expand whilst maintaining the vital woodland habitats as well. The team are leaving the older trees which creates 'wood pasture'. Wood pasture is a vital edge habitat that naturally occurs in-between woodland and heathland, and will soon be a very important part of the reserve.

Lots of the wood is left as deadwood habitat, but a lot of the larger timber is sold as firewood at our neighbouring reserve, Redgrave and Lopham Fen. The smaller 'brash' and branches are put through the chipper and as we have a lot of this surplus wood chip it is being left at the roadside for anyone to help themselves to - so take a spade and a car boot and get filling!

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