Wednesday 2 January 2019

Wild boar, rain and coppicing

Let's start with the fun bit - a compilation of video clips of wild boar recorded on our Bushnell trail camera. Most animals ignore the camera, but one boar actually saw it, and rapidly changed direction!

Coppicing got off to a slow start this winter for various reasons, but we got a lot done over the past few weeks. Fortunately the rain we've had has been mostly overnight, though that did mean I had to unblock the culvert on arrival one day. Always satisfying to get that water moving again though!

Here's the area we've been coppicing before we started:



We've done 99% of the cutting using our new battery electric chainsaw, a Husqvarna 536LiXP. While slower than the petrol one, it doesn't produce toxic exhaust fumes right in front of your face, it's quieter, there's no starter cord to pull and it doesn't burn fossil fuels. It can cope with trees up to about 12", which covers a lot of what we're coppicing:


We've made reasonable progress now, the large stool in one of the photos above is down, and yielded some useful pieces of wood as well as firewood:


We've also got several stacks of wood ready to start seasoning now as well:



Meanwhile, in the wayleave over the hill from us, National Grid's contractor has come in with a large machine that's eaten everything:

2018-12-08 15.02.10

Although this looks dramatic, it actually results in a really good habitat a few years later. They don't do it to the whole area in one year, so wildlife has some chance to get out of the way.

I'll leave you with a scenic woodland photo, hope you have a great 2019!

2018-12-16 09.28.56



R said...

Are the boar causing much damage?

Mike Pepler said...

Not in the woods, they root around a bit and mix up the soil, which can be beneficial. When they get into farmland it's probably quite annoying for the farmer though, but I think we have to leave space for wildlife, even if it costs us a bit of food production.

Robin said...

Yet to see any around here. The deer do a bit of damage to my newly planted trees but hopefully the naturally seeded ones will take their place.