Threatened habitats in UK

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  • Threatened habitats in the UK
    • Broadleaf Woodland
      • Almost all of Britain used to be covered by woodland after the Ice Age. Most of woodland dominated by deciduous trees such as oak, beech & Ash. In parts of Scotland where too cold for these, Scots Pine dominated.
      • Traditional woodland management:
        • Mature Trees - used to produce large timbers for house & ship construction - valuable nesting for birds
        • Coppicing - trees cut to ground level on a rotation every 7 to 12 years. As they regrow they produce thin, straight branches for products such as fencing and wall panels. The mixed habitat produced is very valuable for many species including butterflies, insects & doormice.
        • Pollarding - similar to coppicing but trees cut down to about 1.8m. Protects the new growth from grazing live stock, deer & rabbits.
      • Importance of native woodland:
        • highest biodiversity
        • range of recreational activities possible
        • regulates water flow in catchment areas around rivers
        • Trees reduce soil erosion
        • growing forests absorb co2 - help limit climate change
        • trees return water to atmosphere by evapo-transpiration & therefore maintain rainfall downwind
        • resources - timber & fuel
    • Wetlands
      • Areas of shallow water (lakes, ponds, marshes,etc) Important to wildlife as relatively rare. Natural silting up & succession = continual loss of wetlands. Habitat, drink, breeding ground(frogs) Remain ice free in winter so birds migrate to escape cold winters elsewhere.
      • Threats
        • drainage to produce more productive farmland
        • urban expansion onto flood plains
        • straightening of rivers
        • excessive recreation pressure
        • bank reinforcement to reduce flooding risk
        • pollution from industry, sewage & agriculture
    • The Broads
      • Richest and most varied habitat in UK
      • Threats
        • Introduced species such as copyu, damaged banks & caused flooding. Now all been caught & killed
        • recreation pressure - litter, noise, trampling, fuel pollution,
        • sea level rise may cause flooding & salt water incursions
      • Management Strategies
        • sediment removal
        • public education
        • bank protection

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