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Early rotation short rotation willow coppice as a winter food resource for birds

Fry, D. A. and Slater, Frederick Maurice 2011. Early rotation short rotation willow coppice as a winter food resource for birds. Biomass and Bioenergy 35 (7) , pp. 2545-2553. 10.1016/j.biombioe.2011.02.016

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Unlike a century ago when mixed arable/pastoral farms prevailed, the current Welsh pastoral landscape lacks arable crops for arable weed seeds as a winter food resource for granivorous birds. Biomass crops such as short rotation willow coppice (SRC) where Salix cultivars are grown at high density (10 000–40 000 per ha) and each plot harvested on a usually three year rotation may help redress this loss. SRC, certainly in its establishment phase, and, if suitably managed, in early post-harvest rotation, offers significant winter seed resource which within one resource, such as spear thistle (Cirsium vulgare), may change its bird availability depending whether it is upright when used by finches or fallen when utilised by ground feeding thrushes. If this crop becomes widespread in the landscape and it is managed in an environmentally friendly way, it will provide a food resource and possibly habitat “stepping stones” in countryside currently barren of such features.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Q Science > QH Natural history
S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0961-9534
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 05:16

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