One of the most dramatic features of the stunning coastline of the South West are the estuarine forests; shields of oak canopy spilling down to the waters edge along estuaries and open stretches of coastline. What is the future for these mature woodlands that play such an important part in the visual landscape; such a feature for tourists to visit from land or sea?

Having wanted to start work on this for many years we are finally working with the Woodland Trust to undertake a quick assessment of their extent and condition. In its early phase this is a GIS analysis mapping woodland extent against tidal ranges alongside analysis of woodland grant recipients and the ancient-woodland databases. Once completed we will force ourselves out of the office to undertake a condition assessment looking at age profiles and ecological diversity of a small sample.

We hope this scoping work will lead to a much bigger more ambitious project that will encompass research into genetic diversity, salt-tolerance adaptation, silviculture of renewal & resilience, importance to tourism and other socio-economic uses and possibilities.

I’d like to say thanks to my dentist (randomly) Dr. Andrew Brown the leading light of theĀ B4 native honey-bee project who has pushed us to continue on exploring how we can make this work happen. If you are interested in how this work is progressing or taking a further role in its continuation please get in touch.

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