Woodland Development: A Long Term Study of Lady Park Wood
Lady Park Wood was set aside as a 'natural' (i.e. unmanaged) reserve for ecological research in 1944 and the trees, shrubs and ground vegetation have been recorded in detail ever since. The 70 years of observations now represent one of the largest and most detailed records in Europe of how a woodland develops under the influence of natural factors. The observations have generated a series of papers since 1987 and have contributed to meta-analyses of long-term change across temperate Europe and North America, but there has never been a general account of the wood as a research reserve, save for articles in British Wildlife in 1995 and 2005. The main record comprises detailed measurements of 20,000 individual trees and shrubs, from which the performance of populations of oak, beech, ash, limes, etc. can be quantified in detail, and the development of a near-natural wood and the factors influencing it can be detailed. The book also makes reference to woods elsewhere in Britain and Europe. It mainly deals with populations of native tree species, individually and collectively. It also broadens out to consider the implications for nature conservation, re-wilding and remoteness, near-to-nature forestry, monitoring and long-term ecological research, the meaning of natural woodland, and even aspects of woodland history. --
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