Summary of research
Habitats (as ecosystems), together with genes and species, are key components of biodiversity. Management of habitats provides a means of conserving biodiversity and ensuring the maintenance of a flow of services from which humans benefit. The importance of habitats is acknowledged through regulation and in guidance over sustainable forest management. Silvicultural or habitat management systems manipulate ecological processes to achieve a range of different objectives which influence the conservation and enhancement of biodiversity and the basket of ecosystem services that are provided.
Past work within this programme has focussed upon the restoration of Plantations on Ancient Woodland Sites (PAWS), the restoration of open ground habitats (especially peatlands), the management and restoration of priority native woodlands (especially native Scots pine and oak), and the development of habitat in new native woodland plantings. As a consequence of the reduction in funding in this area, this programme will focus upon the writing up and conclusion of past work on these themes. Some work deemed to be essential, and some of the skills acquired during the past work, will be continued within the Land Use and Ecosystem Services programme and the Genes, Species and Habitat conservation programme.