|Appears in Collections:||Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles|
|Peer Review Status:||Refereed|
|Title:||Willow (Salix spp.) and aspen (Populus tremula) regrowth after felling by the Eurasian beaver (Castor fiber): implications for riparian woodland conservation in Scotland|
|Citation:||Jones K, Gilvear D, Willby N & Gaywood M (2009) Willow (Salix spp.) and aspen (Populus tremula) regrowth after felling by the Eurasian beaver (Castor fiber): implications for riparian woodland conservation in Scotland, Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 19 (1), pp. 75-87.|
|Abstract:||1. A proposed trial reintroduction of the Eurasian beaver (Castor fiber L.) to Scotland has recently been approved (May 2008). A previous proposal was turned down by the licensing authority, partly over the perceived risks to woodland within a Special Area of Conservation. 2. This paper presents data on two years of willow (Salix spp.) and aspen (Populus tremula L.) regrowth following tree felling by captive beavers within two large semi-natural enclosures in eastern Scotland. Both willow and aspen are highly preferred by beavers. 3. Regrowth of willow stems was quantified from cut stumps, felled logs and partially severed (‘incompletely felled') trees, and compared with growth of stems in the canopies of untouched willows. 4. Maximum annual regrowth was observed in incompletely felled trees, followed by cut stumps and then unfelled control trees. Mean regrowth rates were ca 18 m regrowth per metre of measured tree section per year in incompletely felled trees. This was approximately 12 times more annual regrowth than that observed in unfelled trees, despite apparently selective browsing of the regrowth of incompletely felled trees by roe deer. 5. Although incompletely felled willows represent a relatively small component of felling activity (9% of all felled willow), they contribute disproportionately to the biomass of beaver-engineered riparian woodlands, creating a more multi-layered habitat structure. 6. Willow regrowth in inundated areas was avoided by deer, and harvesting of regrowth by beavers was rare. 7. Significant regrowth from 11 stumps of aspen in 2 years post-felling occurred by suckering, with 85 suckers of mean height 2.1 m being recorded, all of which were subsequently avoided by browsing deer and beavers. 8. These data suggest that rapid regeneration of willow and aspen will occur in riparian woodlands in the event of major felling activity by Eurasian beaver, even in the presence of low to moderate levels of roe deer browsing, and that the conservation status of both these trees or the wider habitats that they form would not be threatened by a well planned and managed reintroduction of beavers to Scotland.|
|Rights:||The publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository. Please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study.|
|Willow (Salix spp.) and aspen (Populus tremula) regrowth after felling by the Eurasian beaver.pdf||392.95 kB||Adobe PDF||Under Embargo until 31/12/2999 Request a copy|
Note: If any of the files in this item are currently embargoed, you can request a copy directly from the author by clicking the padlock icon above. However, this facility is dependent on the depositor still being contactable at their original email address.
This item is protected by original copyright
Items in the Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.
If you believe that any material held in STORRE infringes copyright, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org providing details and we will remove the Work from public display in STORRE and investigate your claim.