This forest field day will concentrate on forests and biodiversity. ProSilva committee member and ecologist Faith Wilson will lead the day with ProSilva Austrian forester Georg Frank.
The field day will focus on the theme of forest management and biodiversity enhancement and field day stops will be at various locations in the Glengariff Woods Nature Reserve (http://www.glengarriffnaturereserve.ie/) and the neighbouring Derrynafulla forest, also owned by the National Parks and Wildlife Service.
Glengarriff Woods Nature Reserve covers some 300ha, with the dominant habitats being old oak woodland and young woodland which is regenerating in areas which have been cleared of non-native conifers over the last few years. There has also been an extensive long term and on-going of clearance of Rhododendron in the Oak woodlands. The woods form one of the best examples of oceanic sessile oak woodland in Ireland, being rated at least as important as the Killarney oakwoods. Derrynafulla forest was established as a commercial plantation with Sitka spruce and lodgepole pine but difficult access and varied productivity create serious challenges for future management. Both woodlands host a rich fauna, including species of special significance such as the freshwater pearl mussel, the Kerry slug, seven bat species, otters, pine marten, red squirrel, arboreal ants, longhorn beetles and many more.
Apart from the special flora associated with native oak woodlands, Glengarriff also hosts Hiberno-lusitanianspecies which have an unusual distribution in that they occur almost exclusively in south-west Ireland and in northern parts of Spain and Portugal. These include two species of saxifrage, Irish Spurge, Large-flower Butterwort and the Strawberry Tree. There are also challenges with invasive species such as rhododendron, sika deer, mink and others.
The field day is being kindly facilitated by the National Parks and Wildlife Service and we will also be joined by George Frank from Pro Silva Austria who is a world expert on Forest Management and Biodiversity and by Faith Wilson (Woodland ecologist), ProSilva Ireland committee member who has special knowledge of both Glengarriff and Derrynafulla.
Directions: See the Glengarrif website – http://www.glengarriffnaturereserve.ie/
Please bring your own packed lunch, wet weather clothing and boots.
A €20 donation is appreciated to cover the cost of the visiting Pro Silva Europe forester.