2nd Woodland Grazing Workshop

How trees and livestock can grow together

10th March 2005

What was the event?

The event brought together farmers, crofters, foresters, other land managers, researchers, conservationists and agencies with an interest in managing woodlands for conservation benefit using livestock

View flyer (PDF-207K)

The morning session was devoted to a number of guest speakers:

  • Helen Armstrong, Forest Research:
    The results of the survey of cattle grazed woodlands in Great Britain
  • Neil Duncan, an Argyll farmer:
    The practical aspects of maintaining an economically viable farming enterprise whilst also achieving conservation benefit through woodland grazing
  • Tony Boyd, Camusnagul & Achaphubail Crofting Trust:
    Woodland grazing within a crofting community
  • David Whitaker and Donald Hendry, Forest Enterprise:
    Restoration of the native pinewoods using cattle in Glen Garry
  • Alex Morris, Forestry Commission Scotland:
    The new Stewardship Grant and integration with the Single Farm Payment and Land Management Contracts.

The afternoon session comprised two 1-hour workshops and delegates were able to choose two workshops to attend from the following:

  • The use of pigs as a scarification tool
  • Sheep and their role in woodland grazing
  • Stock husbandry and welfare
  • Management planning and monitoring
  • Management of birch regeneration.

Where did the event take place?

Dunstaffnage Marine Laboratory
Argyll PA37 1QA


Chair: Gordon Gray Stephens – Director, Scottish Native Woods

10.00 - 10.30 Registration and coffee/tea
10.30 West Highland Woodland Grazing Project Update – Lucy Sumsion, Argyll FWAG
10.40 Cattle Grazing in Woodlands – Helen Armstrong, Forest Research
11.00 Livestock in woodlands the farmers perspective – Neil Duncan, Stonefield Farms
11.15 Livestock in woodlands the crofters perspective – Tony Boyd, Camusnagul & Achaphubuil Crofting Trust
11.30 Break
11.40 Livestock in woodlands the foresters perspective – David Whitaker & Donald Hendry, Glen Garry Cattle Grazing Project
12.00 SFGS Stewardship Grant: controlled livestock grazing in woodlands – Alex Morris, Forestry Commission Scotland
12.20 Discussion
12.40 Introduction to the workshop sessions – Gordon Gray Stephens, Scottish Native Woods
12.45 – 1.45 Buffet Lunch
1.45 – 3.30 Participatory Workshops – delegates will be able to choose two workshops and each workshop will last approx ¾ hour
WORKSHOP 1: Using pigs as a scarification tool – Chloe Randall, Dunlossit Estate
WORKSHOP 2: Sheep and their role in woodland grazing – Meg Pollock, SAC
WORKSHOP 3: Animal husbandry & welfare – Margaret Lister, Dalriada Veterinary Surgery & Donald Harrison, SAC
WORKSHOP 4: Management planning & monitoring – Tony Waterhouse, SAC
WORKSHOP 5: Management of birch regeneration –Peter Quelch, Forestry Commission Scotland
3.30 – 4.15 Report back on workshops followed by discussion & round up - Gordon Gray Stephens

Other information

It was nearly a year since the Woodland Grazing Workshop "Trees & livestock can they grow together?" was held in Argyll in February 2004. One of the main outcomes from the workshop was a recognition of the biodiversity benefits of woodland grazing and a rallying call for a more integrated and holistic approach to farm and woodland management.

The need to identify appropriate management regimes for woodlands, that recognises the role of livestock and the conservation benefit that they deliver has been established. It was now necessary to introduce a grant scheme that supports such regimes.

In November 2004 Scotland's Forestry Minister, Lewis MacDonald, announced the establishment of three new pilot stewardship grants, to promote the sustainable management of farm woodlands.  One of these new stewardship grants is for the sustainable grazing of woodlands. The Forestry Commission, in collaboration with the West Highland Woodland Grazing Project, will pilot this grant in Argyll and Lochaber in 2005.

This 2nd Woodland Grazing Workshop gave participants the opportunity to find out more about both the science and practice of managing woodlands with livestock.


Lucy Sumsion
Project Co-ordinator
Argyll FWAG
c/o Ardkinglas Estate
Argyll PA26 8BH

Tel & Fax: 01499 600113
Email: argyll@fwag.org.uk