Author Archive

Speaker:

Graham Gill
Forest Management Director
North England Forest District
Forestry Commission England

Biography:

Graham gained a degree in Ecological Science from Edinburgh University in 1975 and joined the Forestry Commission in the same year. He has managed forests around Inverness, worked as a conifer tree breeder, and headed up the Commission’s Environment Branch at a time when the environmental guidelines were being introduced. He is a founder member of the Continuous Cover Forestry Group and a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Foresters. For the past two years, he has been Forest Manager for FC forests across the north of England, and for the previous 17 years, manager for FC forests in the north east, including Kielder Forest. He has a keen interest in developing techniques for introducing continuous cover silviculture on the margins of upland spruce forests.


Synopsis of Presentation:

Continuous cover forestry (CCF) is an approach to forest management that results in the development of diverse forests with a range of different structures and often a variety of species. A range of silvicultural systems is included under the broad heading of CCF, a key feature being that, unlike clearfelling systems, tree canopy cover is never totally removed.

CCF is not an end in itself but a means of delivering management objectives where site and species are suitable for its use. Some of the advantages and disadvantages of CCF compared to clearfelling will be discussed illustrated by examples from north of England forests.

Many claims are made for the sustainability and resilience of CCF systems, yet we have relatively little experience of their use in the UK. Much of our information comes from continental Europe where species, soils, climate and light regime are different. It is important that claims are tested and that our understanding of the benefits is based on sound science. We need to build on the experience we have, gain more experience and learn from it. This conference is an excellent opportunity for separating fact from fiction, for finding out what is known about CCF systems in the UK and what we have yet to learn.


Conference Resource:

  • Download/View Graham Gill’s Presentation   [PDF, 8.5 MB]

Websites and References:

  1. Matthews, J D (1989) Silvicultural Systems, Clarendon Press, Oxford


Speaker:

Gary Kerr
Principal Silviculturist
Forest Research
Alice Holt Lodge, Farnham
Website: www.forestresearch.gov.uk/staff/gary-kerr

Biography:

Dr. Gary Kerr is Principal Silviculturist in Forest Research. He has published over 40 papers in peer reviewed journal, 16 Forestry Commission publications and over 50 articles in professional publications communicating the results of his research. For about the past ten years Gary’s work has focussed on alternative approaches to management and continuous cover silviculture. Gary also holds two significant posts that supplement his research activities. First, he is Editor-in-Chief of Forestry: An international Journal of forest research, published by Oxford University Press. Second, he is co-ordinator of the International Union of Forest Research Organization’s Research Group 1.05.00 on uneven-aged silviculture.


Synopsis of Presentation:

The presentation explains the concept of resilience and examines ways in which it can be achieved by forestry practice in Britain. In addition, it questions whether our present understanding of the main building blocks of resilience has a sound knowledge base and, if not, what can be done to rectify this situation.


Conference Resource:


Websites and References:

  1. Kerr, G. (2008) Managing Continuous Cover Forests. Forestry Commission Operational Guidance Booklet 7, Forestry Commission, Edinburgh.
  2. Harmer, R. and Kerr, G. (2013) Using canopy cover to control vegetation in continuous cover forestry. Quarterly Journal of Forestry, 107(2):113-121.
  3. Kerr, G. and Haufe, J. (2011) Thinning Practice: A Silvicultural Guide. Forestry Commission, Edinburgh.
  4. Poore, A. and Kerr, G. (2009) Continuous Cover Silviculture at the Stourhead (Western) Estate, Wiltshire, UK. Quarterly Journal of Forestry, 103:23-30.
  5. Davies, O. and Kerr, G. (2011) Costs and Revenues of Transformation to Continuous Cover Forestry. Report to the Forestry Commission by Forest Research. Alice Holt Lodge, Farnham, Surrey, England.


Speaker:

Andy Poore

Andy Poore
The Old Dairy
North Bowood
Bridport, Dorset, DT6 5JH

Biography:

Trained in economics at Trinity Hall, Cambridge and forestry at UNCW Bangor, Andy has operated as an independent forest manager and consultant based in South West England since 1984. He is involved in the management of 10,000 acres of varied woodland in Dorset, Wiltshire and Mid Wales. His practice moved away from plantation forestry in the early 1990s and now all the managed woodland follows CCF principles.

Andy is also a Director of SelectFor Ltd which provides specialist consultancy, training and research services in CCF, a founder member of CCFG and a member of the Association de Futaie Irrégulière, a French irregular silviculture research network.


Synopsis of Presentation:

This presentation considers the situation of a private forest manager seeking to define and monitor the stand development of more developed irregular stands in the UK over the last 15 years in a situation where no useable information on stand performance exists, although information is available from irregular stands in Continental Europe.

Further, stand interventions must be organised in an economically optimal way in order to deliver an acceptable financial result for the owner.

The presentation looks at the author’s answers to the following questions:

  • What parameters to monitor?
  • How to focus monitoring effort to deliver cost-effectiveness?
  • How to integrate monitoring results into marking practice in order to progress stand development and in order to produce the best economic result from interventions in the short and longer term?
  • How to calibrate monitoring results from European research?

The presentation will demonstrate that diameter increment is the key parameter to measure and that when combined with other, easily determined parameters, effective silvicultural and economic tools can be produced.


Conference Resource:

  • Download/View Andy Poore’s Presentation  [PDF, 5.3 MB]

Unfortunately Andy Poore was unable to give this talk, and the material was presented instead by his Selectfor colleague, Phil Morgan.


Presenter:

Phil Morgan

Phil Morgan
Plas y Wenallt
Llanafan
Aberystwyth
Ceredigion, SY23 4AX

Biography:

Philippe Morgan is President of Pro Silva and Vice-president of the Association Futaie rrégulière. He has a wide range of work and travelling experience from South East Asia to Europe and North America. He manages forests in Wales for a living and also works as a consultant in France and in Ireland. He is a Director of SelectFor, specialists in continuous cover forest management, developing an international network of CCF research stands and training plots across Britain and Ireland.


Websites and References:

  1. Poore A (2007) CCF at Stourhead – Final Report. Continuous Cover Silviculture & Mensuration in Mixed Conifers at the Stourhead (Western) Estate, Wiltshire, UK. Link to PDF  [PDF, 1.1 MB]
  2. www.selectfor.com/research/research.html
  3. www.selectfor.com/resources/resources_articles.html
  4. www.prosilva.fr/html/index_test.html


Speaker:

Christine Reid

Christine Reid
Senior Woodland and Forestry Specialist
Natural England
Unex House
Peterborough, PE1 1NG
Website: www.naturalengland.org.uk

Biography:

I am Natural England’s Senior Woodland and Forestry specialist. I provide advice and training to NE staff and our partners on woodland and conservation issues across England – particularly on woodland SSSIs and ancient woodland. I am currently interested in promoting the restoration of replanted ancient woodland, the impact of tree diseases on wildlife, how woodlands are responding to climate change, and novel

Speaker:

Saul Herbert

Saul Herbert
Senior Reserve Manager
Wyre Forest NNR
Natural England

Biography:

I have been responsible for the management of the Wyre Forest National Nature Reserve for the last six years. We are delivering conservation focussed management over 500 ha of ancient oak woodland, and working to restore a similar area of ancient woodland from conifer plantation. We are establishing a range of long term monitoring programmes in the Wyre Forest to study the effects of silvicultural systems, broadleaved woodland restoration and habitat management on the wildlife of the forest.


Synopsis of Presentation:

Natural England is keen to explore what CCF management can deliver for woodland wildlife. This talk examines the needs of woodland wildlife and some of the reasons, as identified in recent research projects, why much woodland wildlife is in serious decline. The talk discusses two studies which are beginning at Cranborne Chase (Rushmore Estate) SSSI and the Wyre Forest (SSSI/NNR), two of the largest and most wildlife-rich lowland broadleaved woodlands in England. The objectives and methodologies being used to look at the effects on wildlife of implementing CCF on these sites are discussed. Their large size, management history and current management aims mean that it is possible to compare wildlife effects of a range of forest structures, in both established CCF systems and at the introduction of CCF into undermanaged woodland. Because of the ‘newness’ of CCF in lowland England, some innovative methods are being used to compare the effects of changing woodland structures on woodland birds, invertebrates (including those in the tree canopy)and reptiles. Only very limited study results are available at this stage: watch this space!


Conference Resource:

  • Download/View Christine Reid and Saul Herbert’s Presentation  [PDF, 3.0 MB]
  • Watch Christine Reid and Saul Herbert’s Presentation  [Youtube]


Speaker:

Mark Broadmeadow

Mark Broadmeadow
Principal Advisor Climate Change
Forestry Commission England
Alice Holt Lodge
Farnham, Surrey

Biography:

Mark Broadmeadow is the Forestry Commission’s Principal Adviser for Climate Change in England. His role covers the development of policy and its application to delivery for both mitigation and adaptation. Mark views the incorporation of climate change adaptation principles as critical for woodland management and was involved in drafting the UK Forestry Standard’s Forest and Climate Change Guidelines. Prior to transferring to Forestry Commission England in 2006, Mark led Forest Research’s Environmental Change Research Group. He is a plant physiologist by training, and research interests have included elevated CO2 impacts research and developing decision support systems for species choice in a changing climate.


Synopsis of Presentation:

The need to adapt to climate change is highlighted in the context of the UK Climate Change Risk Assessment, the National Adaptation Programme and the Forestry Commission’s Adaptation Reporting Power Report – all of which extol the potential benefits of continuous cover systems of management for increasing woodland resilience. The basic principles of adaptation are presented, including how the considerable uncertainty associated with the detail of climate projections can be addressed. Different approaches to adaptation through continuous cover forestry to meet different objectives and for a range of woodland types is explored. Adopting an adaptation framework in this way, rather than a single approach to adaptation will help to avoid ‘mal-adaptation’ and unintended consequences while, at the same time, providing a sufficient level of intervention to increase resilience so that our woodlands continue to provide the services that society requires of them long into the future.


Conference Resource:


Websites and References:

  1. Forestry Commission (2011). Forests and Climate Change. UK Forestry Standard Guidelines. Forestry Commission, Edinburgh.
  2. Forestry Commission England (2012). Adaptation Reporting Power Report. Link to PDF  [PDF, 1.0 MB]
  3. Ray, D., Morison, J. and Broadmeadow, M. (2010). Impacts and adaptation in England’s woodlands. Forestry Commission Research Note 201.
  4. Read, D.J., Freer-Smith, P.H., Morison, J.I.L., Hanley, N., West, C.C. and Snowdon, P. eds. (2009). Combating Climate Change – a Role for UK Forests. The Stationery Office, Edinburgh.
  5. Stokes, V. and Kerr, G. (2009). The evidence supporting the use of CCF in adapting Scotland’s forests to the risks of climate change. Forest Research. Alice Holt Lodge, Farnham. Link to PDF  [PDF, 900 KB]


Chairman for Plenary Session 2:

Chris Starr

Chris Starr, OBE
Consultant Forester and
former Head of the National Forestry School

Biography:

Chris Starr represents the forest industry and land owners and practises as an independent consultant based in the Eden Valley, Cumbria but working throughout the UK and overseas. His career spans over 30 years spent in private and local authority forestry, applied forestry education and training and in consultancy. He has worked with foresters in many countries, most recently from Nigeria and Nepal, and has seen at first hand the effect poor woodland management has on the ability of the resource to provide for the needs of local people. He is the author of a book on practical woodland management aimed at owners new to the sector and recently chaired the Forestry Regulation Task Force for DEFRA. “I believe passionately that well-managed forests and woodlands provide a genuinely sustainable resource, capable of securing multiple benefits for society as a whole. In a small and densely populated country we have a duty to make the most effective and efficient use of our forest resource.” Chris is a trustee of the Forest Industries Benevolent Fund and a community governor of a small village primary school. He was awarded an OBE for ‘Services to British Forestry and Forestry Education’ in 2013 and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Foresters.



Speaker:

Graham Taylor

Graham Taylor
Managing Director
Pryor & Rickett Silviculture
Lugwardine
Hereford
Website: www.silviculture.co.uk

Biography:

Graham has spent over 23 years managing privately owned woodlands in Herefordshire. He joined Pryor & Rickett Silviculture in 1993 as a forester, but since 1998 has been a director of the company. PRS now have over 300 private clients spread across the full range of woodland types in England and Wales. Graham specialises in the sustainable management of Ancient Woodlands and has wide experience of balancing the needs of silvicultural, sporting and ecological interests of private woodland owners. He is currently Marches chairman of CONFOR, a trustee of Woodland Heritage and co-chair of the Future Trees Trust.


Synopsis of Presentation:

Herefordshire’s lowland woodlands present a considerable challenge when practising CCF. The underlying Old Red Sandstone gives rise to hugely fertile deep brown earth soils. These combine with an equitable local climate to provide an excellent medium for tree growth, but also for weed competition. The application of CCF with such strong competition has involved developing longer term understorey management to increase shade to the forest floor.

Seeding cycles for Oak and Sweet chestnut are long. Siboria batschiana infection results in large losses of sessile oak mast in the forest. Masting of many species is infrequent, hence careful seeding canopy development is an ongoing process. Enhanced tree growth and the proximity of grey squirrel nesting / feeding habitat requires a zero tolerance landscape scale control to achieve long term objectives. With rising deer populations, landscape scale deer management has also become pre-requisite for success.

Despite these pressures, CCF has been achieved, working with a pragmatic estate wide small group selection system, utilising a reactive approach to rare pockets of advance natural regeneration and an interventionist approach through planting, with transplants derived from seed gathered from selected estate ‘Plus trees’. Selective crop protection is applied.


Conference Resources:



Speaker:

Scott McG Wilson

Scott McG Wilson
Consultant Forester and Forest Ecologist Aberdeen

Biography:

Following completion of an MSc in Resource Management from the University of Edinburgh (1994) I continued there, undertaking a PhD in Forest Soils and Ecology, working on development of the Forestry Commission’s Ecological Site Classification (ESC). Since 1998 I have practised as an independent consultant forester and forest ecologist, based in Aberdeen (Chartered Forester since 2001). I have worked on a wide range of surveying, consultancy, policy advice and published authorship projects covering native woodland ecology, garden/ landscape history, hardwood tree improvement, alternative conifer species, silvicultural systems and ecosystem services. My professional interests are developing towards integrated rural estate management.


Synopsis of Presentation:

A previous review of alternative silvicultural systems (ATC/ CCF) adoption in Britain was by Hart (1995) (FC Bulletin 115). More recently there has been promotion of wider adoption and ramification of proposed advantages and techniques. A fresh review was conducted by the present author in 2012-13, employing desk study, technical consultation and field visits. Illustrated case-studies of successful ATC adoption were developed. While “classical”, “mature” or “well-developed” ATC still applies to only 2-3% of British woodland, larger areas across all ownerships are now subject to less mature / formalised inception of ATC by thinning responding to natural regeneration of crop species. Emerging objectives include reduced restocking outlay, gradual PAWS restoration, species diversification and increased resilience to climatic and pathogenic perturbations. Continued British expansion of ATC is constrained to some extent by fundamental site factors, principally in exposed upland areas. However operational constraints remain centred on shortages of ATC-relevant equipment, skills and expertise in the British forestry sector as compared to the Continental situation and weakly developed / resourced networks of quantified research, demonstration and monitoring sites. Enabling actions required included increased public-sector funding on a strategic level and re-invigorated participation by academic, private-sector and “citizen-science” actors at a tactical level.


Conference Resource:

  • Download/View Scott McG Wilson’s Presentation  [PDF, 13.6 MB]

Websites and References:

  1. www.scottishforestrytrust.org.uk
  2. Wilson, S.McG. (2014, in press) Living with climate change: Mediterranean trees and agroforestry in Britain? Quarterly Journal of Forestry 108(2): xxx-xxx.
  3. Wilson, S.McG. (2013) Adoption of alternative silvicultural systems in Great Britain: a review. Quarterly Journal of Forestry 107(4): 279-293.
  4. Wilson, S.McG. (2012) Retaining timber potential after PAWS restoration. Quarterly Journal of Forestry 106(2): 105-118.
  5. Wilson, S.McG. (2011) Using Alternative Conifer Species for Productive Forestry in Scotland. Edinburgh: Forestry Commission Scotland.
  6. Wilson, S.McG. (2010) Minor conifers in Britain – potential for silviculture and timber utilisation. Quarterly Journal of Forestry 104(1): 29-42.


Speaker:

Dr Áine ní Dhubháin

Dr Áine ní Dhubháin
Senior Lecturer,
School of Agriculture and Food Science,
University College Dublin

and

Lucie Vítková,
PhD student
University College, Dublin

Biography:

Dr Áine ní Dhubháin is a Senior Lecturer in Forestry in the School of Agriculture and Food Science, University College Dublin. She commenced her research career in University College Dublin in 1991 and has focused on three main themes: the socio-economic impacts of forestry; farm afforestation and continuous cover forestry. Since 2002 she has been leading nationally funded research projects into aspects of continuous cover forestry including natural regeneration; light in forest canopies, transformation to CCF in mature Sitka even-aged stands of Sitka spruce using underplanting. She is currently leading the LISS (Low Impact Silvicultural System) project, a collaborative research project between the forest industry in Ireland and University College Dublin.


Synopsis of Presentation:

This presentation gives an overview of the current status of CCF in Ireland. It outlines the results of a survey of forest owners/managers conducted in 2012 which revealed the extent to which, and on what site types, CCF was being practiced in Irish forests. It also presents the results of site visits to a random sample of these sites.

For the past decade or so, research into initiating the transformation process to CCF has been conducted. Originally this research focussed on transforming older stands to CCF through underplanting, more recently experiments exploring the transformation process using different approaches to thinning have been conducted. An overview of the key results from this research will be presented focussing on the results of the thinning experiment.

A number of other initiatives in relation to CCF in Ireland will be described. This will include a description of the expansion of the AFI network and a training exercise on crown thinning that was conducted with forest owners, forest owners and a non forestry group.


Conference Resources:

  • Download/View Áine ní Dhubháin and Lucie Vítková’s Presentation  [PDF, 1.9 MB]
  • Watch Áine ní Dhubháin and Lucie Vítková’s Presentation  [Youtube]

Websites and References:

  1. Ní Dhubháin, Á. 2010. An evaluation of continuous cover forestry in Ireland. COFORD, Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Dublin. Link to PDF  [PDF, 2.0 MB]
  2. Vítková, L., í Dhubháin, Á., O’Tuama, P. and Purser, P. (2013). The practice of Continuous Cover Forestry in Ireland. Irish Forestry Vol 70 No 1-2. pp 141-156.
  3. Ní Dhubháin, Á., O’Leary, D., Keane, M., Farrelly, N. and O’Hare, D. 2001. An Assessment and Demonstration of Continuous Cover Forests in Ireland. Final Report to COFORD. 121 pp.


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Speaker:

Klaus Puettmann

Klaus Puettmann
Edmund Hayes Professor in Silviculture Alternatives,
Oregon State University
Website: www.cof.orst.edu/cof/fs/kpuettmann/group.htm

Biography:

Klaus Puettmann is Edmund Hayes Professor in Silviculture Alternatives at Oregon State University. He grew up in Germany and received a degree from Albert-Ludwig University, Freiburg and from Oregon State University. He was a faculty member at the University of Minnesota from 1992 to 2000 and has been working at OSU since 2001. He has published over 75 peer reviewed papers and two books. His research interests include silviculture and stand development of diverse structured forests, spatial dynamics of plant interactions, and density management. His most recent efforts focused on management aspects that increase adaptability and resilience of forest ecosystems.

 

Synopsis of Presentation:

Continuous-cover forestry and similar alternative silviculture approaches are defined by a set of practices, including 1) partial harvests, 2) variability at small spatial scales 3) mixed species, 4) strong preference for natural regeneration, and 5) avoidance of intensive site preparation and weed control practices. This talk addresses the questions: what is limiting the wider, global application of alternative silviculture approaches and what can we learn from our understanding of these limitations? The presentation highlights how assumptions about social and economic settings, logistic and administrative challenges, and ecological conditions relate to the global implementation of alternative silviculture practices. The talk concludes by suggesting to move beyond an emphasis on principles and practices and develop a sound scientific foundation for alternative silviculture approaches. This foundation should specifically address two future challenges: 1) a renewed focus on managing for multiple values and 2) a special emphasis how management affects the capacity of ecosystems to adapt to changing environmental, social, and economic conditions.

 

Conference Resource:

 

Websites and References:

  1. www.resalliance.org
  2. Brang, P., Spathelf, P. Larsen, P.B., Bauhus, J. Boncina, A., Chauvin, C., Drossler, L. Garcia-Guemes, C., Heiri, C. ; Kerr, G. Lexer, M.J., Mason, W. Mohren, F. Muhlethaler, U., Nocentini, S., Svoboda, M. 2014. Forestry doi: 10.1093/forestry/cpu018
  3. Gustafsson, L., S. C. Baker, J. Bauhus, W. J. Beese, A. Brodie, J. Kouki, D. B. Lindenmayer, A. Lõhmus, G. M. Pastur, and C. Messier. 2012. Retention forestry to maintain multifunctional forests: a world perspective. BioScience 62:633-645.
  4. Messier, C. , Puettmann, K.J. and D. Coates (edts.) 2013. Managing Forests as Complex Adaptive Systems: Building Resilience to the Challenge of Global Change. Earthscan, London. Link
  5. Puettmann, K.J. 2014. Restoring the adaptive capacity of forest ecosystems. Journal of Sustainable Forestry. 33:sup1, S15-S27.
  6. Filotas, E., L. Parrott, P.J. Burton, R.L. Chazdon, K.D. Coates, L. Coll, S. Haeussler, K. Martin, S. Nocentini, K.J. Puettmann, F.E. Putz, S.W. Simard, and C. Messier. 2014. Viewing forests through the lens of complex systems science.