Works to enhance biodiversity in Coillte’s forests Co. Donegal.
Coillte has today confirmed that works are due to commence at its Drumboe, Creggan and Monellan forests, County Donegal to enhance biodiversity. These works are expected to continue throughout the summer months.
In County Donegal, Coillte plans to adopt a close-to-nature approach for the management of a number of its forests in the Ballybofey and Crossroads areas, including the Drumboe, Creggan and Monellan forests. All these forests are currently managed by Coillte primarily for nature and wildlife as biodiversity areas.
Continuous Cover Forestry (CCF) allows for the removal of selected trees for wood while retaining a permanent forest cover to protect wildlife, soils and water. The overall aim is to restructure the forests to enhance their biodiversity in the long term. Management plans for these forests have been developed by Coillte ecologists and foresters.
Opening up the forest canopy through CCF will allow more light to reach the forest floor which will promote the development of woodland flowers and favour the natural regeneration of trees.
The CCF process begins with the identification of trees for removal by a specially trained forester. Other trees with a particularly high value for nature will also be marked to ensure they are retained.
Tree harvesting equipment will be used to carefully fell a proportion of the trees throughout the forest. CCF is a long-term process but over time the forest canopy and ground flora will become more diverse benefitting wildlife and nature.
These works are being carried out as part of Coillte’s wider new forestry strategic vision which aims to balance and deliver the multiple benefits of its forests for climate, nature, wood and people. Coillte is committed to the enhancement and restoration of biodiversity on its forests and lands and to increase the amount of land it manages primarily for nature from 20% to 30% by the year 2025. In the longer term, Coillte plans to transform areas of our forests so that 50% of its estate is managed primarily for nature.
Coillte know that these forests are important recreational and amenity sites for the local community and as such is hosting a public consultation day in Coillte’s Ballybofey Office on Friday 30th June between 2pm and 5pm to discuss the plans for these forests and giving members of the public an opportunity to ask any questions they might have.
Visitors to these forests are kindly asked to follow all safety signage and instructions from staff on site while the works are ongoing.