Case study: Frochas Wood

Fro­chas Wood, on the Lleyn Penin­sula in North Wales,was a recently planted Sitka Spruce plan­ta­tion when pur­chased by Wildlife Wood­lands.  We were attracted to it by good road­side access, a small pond and quite a bit of nat­ural regen­er­a­tion of broadleaves.  Early work involved some selec­tive thin­ning, to help pro­mote a more diverse wood­land, with a higher pro­por­tion of broadleaves.  Birch was the most com­mon species seed­ing in, but there were also ele­ments of other trees, includ­ing oak.

We also reviewed the pond and water sup­ply, and decided to both enlarge the exist­ing pond and con­struct a new one, util­is­ing water from a small spring in another sec­tion of the wood.   Enter Keith with his 13 tonne tracked exca­va­tor!  The exist­ing pond was tre­bled in size, keep­ing as much mar­ginal veg­e­ta­tion as pos­si­ble to help colonise the new areas.  On the other side of the wood we were able to under­take a sig­nif­i­cant amount of soil shift­ing, to cre­ate a new pond, mainly deep­en­ing the course of the drain, but also pro­vid­ing a wide earth bund to raise the water level, with a soft engi­neered outfall.

The end result is a more diverse wood­land with two large ponds adding con­ser­va­tion inter­est and a great place to visit with the dogs, or for a fam­ily picnic.


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