A management oriented study of the Birch-Rowan-Hazel woodland at Mudough Bay, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland.

  • Pierre Binggeli Department of Biology, New University of Ulster, Coleraine, Co. Londonderry.
  • Brian S. Rushton Department of Biology, New University of Ulster, Coleraine, Co. Londonderry.
Keywords: Forestry management, birch, rowan, hazel, woodland management, silviculture.

Abstract

A management oriented study of the Birch-Rowan-Hazel woodland at Murlough Bay, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland was conducted in order to establish the balance of tree species composition, population age structure and regeneration of the tree species, grazing pressure and the status of Sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus L.) and Ash (Fraxinus excelsior L.) which are invading the woodland. The woodland forms part of the National Trust Nature Reserve. Results indicated that: 1. the most common trees were Birch (Betula pubescens Ehrh.) 1016 trees/ha, Rowan (Sorbus aucuparia L.) 244 trees/ha and Hazel (Corylus avellana L.) 236 trees/ha whilst Sycamore and Ash accounted for 21.4 and 14.8 trees/ha respectively; 2. the main tree species were, by and large, segregated within the woodland with Hazel just below the cliff, Birch in the lower, damper areas and Rowan between; 3. plots of Log. Tree Number against Log. Tree Age indicated that populations of all the above five tree species were declining; 4. regeneration appeared to be sparse despite the very large numbers of seedlings produced whilst there was extensive evidence of grazing pressures from goats and sheep; 5. assuming no regeneration or mortality of the Sycamore, its canopy cover is likely to increase from 4.0% to 11.4% of the total in the next 50 years; that of Ash will increase from 2.0% to 6.7% over the same period. A management plan, directed towards restricting grazing and Sycamore eradication by tree-barking is suggested.
Published
1985-11-01
How to Cite
Binggeli, P., & Rushton, B. S. (1985). A management oriented study of the Birch-Rowan-Hazel woodland at Mudough Bay, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland. Irish Forestry. Retrieved from https://journal.societyofirishforesters.ie/index.php/forestry/article/view/9562
Section
Articles