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padodes
2007-11-12 20:39:07
"" from padodes Expand pics
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Dead wood
Why are there so few coniferous forests in Ireland like the one shown in the photo (taken along part of the Wicklow Way in Glencullen)? You can leave the track at any point and wander freely among the trees. Most of our coniferous forests are impenetrable, except where traversed by the occasional path or firebreak. They are also practically dead, with little in the way of vegetation, bird or animal life under their canopy. Having the opportunity to walk earlier this year in commercial forests in Sweden that occupy immense tracts of land, I was pleasantly surprised at how well-spaced the trees are. While still young, they are thinned out to allow for the strong, straight growth of a selected number. There is evidence of plenty of life on all sides. Even when it comes to logging, rather than leaving a vast expanse of land with blackened stumps, swathes of mature trees are felled yet leaving others with younger trees alongside. All in all, the impression is one of forestry that, although comercially viable, is still respectful of nature and of the landscape. Does anyone familiar with Irish forestry know why we engage in this country in a manner of cultivation that does so little for the areas it covers, both while the trees are growing and afterwards, when the dead wood leaches its acids into lakes and streams and carries its deadening effect still further afield?
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