Coppicing and pollarding at Moor Green Lakes

Yesterday the volunteers and I returned to Moor Green Lakes to coppice a section of hazel on the south east corner of Colebrook Lake South. Managing the hazel in a coppice cycle ensures we maintain low dense scrub which is ideal for nesting birds.

This coppice regime also keeps traditional skills alive by harvesting the sustainable hazel, which was used last month to lay the hedge by Colebrook Hide. Yesterday we processed another 50 hazel stakes to be used on a task at Grants Moor in a fortnight.

The freshly cut hazel stools were covered over in brash wigwams to reduce deer and rabbit predation and encourage regrowth. Interspersed field maple and hawthorn trees needed to be trimmed to open up the light. Since we don’t need the timber they were pollarded above deer munching height at 5ft. It was great to get a block of over-mature scrub cleared, so thank you to everyone who helped out.

Tony building a brash wigwam over the coppice stool

Tony building a brash wigwam over the coppice stool

Volunteers coppicing and pollarding

Volunteers coppicing and pollarding

Ranger Stuart

 

 

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About blackwatervalleycountryside

The Blackwater Valley is located on the borders of Hampshire, Surrey and Berkshire and runs for approximately 30km from the source near Aldershot, northwards to Swallowfield. At its confluence it joins the rivers Whitewater and Loddon. The Loddon eventually flows into the River Thames near Reading. Work in the Blackwater Valley is co-ordinated by the Blackwater Valley Countryside Partnership on behalf of the local authorities that border the Valley. Despite being surrounded by urban development the Valley provides an important green corridor for local residents As well as the Blackwater Valley Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and a small part of the Basingstoke Canal SSSI, three nature reserves within the Valley catchment and many other areas have been recognised for their ecological importance. The local planning authorities covering the Valley have designated 31 other areas as ‘Wildlife Sites’.
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