The LIFE Forests-waterworlds - Ville Forests project (LIFE13 NAT/DE/000147) is demonstrating an innovative tool – known as a marteloscope – to support sustainable forest management. A key project aim is to conserve oak-hornbeam forests on poorly-drained soils in four Natura 2000 network sites in western Germany. The marteloscope provides forest managers with the information, training and experience they need to incorporate biodiversity conservation objectives into timber production activities.
WHAT IS A MARTELOSCOPE?
A marteloscope is a designated area of the forest in which tree measurements are linked to provide a framework for in-forest training in marking and selection. In July 2017, the LIFE project team established, in collaboration with the European Forest Institute (EFI Bonn), a 1 ha demonstration area. In this area, all trees are mapped and evaluated regarding economic and ecological value. This enables forest managers and conservationists to perform virtual tree selection exercises under real conditions, and to discuss the results directly in the field.
The marteloscope approach will form the centrepiece of an integrated demonstration network, comprising over 40 sites in nine European countries. It will be implemented by EFI Bonn and funded by the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL).
Old-growth oak forests provide important habitats for birds, bats and amphibians. The LIFE project will manage forests, retain dead wood, plant new oaks, and fill drainage ditches to raise water levels, with the aim of protecting characteristic oak-forest species.
In particular, such actions will benefit species of woodpecker, and populations of warty newt, midwife toad and agile frog.
To find out more about the LIFE project visit its website.
Source: EC LIFE Programme website