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The Glorious12th
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KILLITnGRILLIT



Joined: 14 Sep 2006
Posts: 894
Location: Looking at a screen in the front room
PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 10 9:56 am    Post subject:  Reply with quote    

The (`keepered) moors are the best place to see nesting waders such as curlew etc. as the `keepers trap/shoot/snare various predators and many landowners are fencing off land to keep deer out to establish natural and crop woodland which when the fences are removed provide great habitat for them all.




.

Archanejil



Joined: 09 Aug 2010
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 10 5:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Many of the moorlands have been about for several thousand years although they are (largely) a man-made habitat, most being made between 18,000 and 6,000 years ago.

Having said that, they're a big part of our landscape and afforestation isn't always a good thing. Sure, you could plant things on it, change the habitat, but then you'd destroy a lot of habitats that birds and insects in particular would be drawn to. Is it a good thing to plant up areas that have been a certain way for 6,000 years? I really don't think so, to be honest.

There are quite a few species that are only or mainly found on moorlands and heath -- hen harriers and adders, for example, are both endangered species and found only on moorlands. Sure, they get trapped on the grouse managed moorlands, but they do persist there at least. They're not the only ones -- they're just the two that spring to mind, bearing in mind that moorlands can support some fairly rare plants and creatures. There are quite a lot of small mammals on moorlands already. As for deer... more deer are not necessarily a good thing. In fact, the impact of deer grazing on the woodlands in Scotland is of quite a bit of concern at the moment, so they're researching it. In sufficient numbers, deer have a habit of eating everything that's not tasty, which can actually end up being damaging to the forest in the long run.

As for whether or not it's worth a slight boost in biodiversity... There are several papers around that break down the economic worth attributable to particular areas. Many moorlands have blanket bogs and wetlands on them, which act as carbon stores which may be realeased if trees are planted on them. Plenty of drinking water is also held and filtered in these areas -- forests tend to use more water than bogs and wetlands. Bogs and wetlands just hold it. Moorlands are also fantastic places for wind-turbines (the really big ones) because very few folks live on moors to be bothered hugely by them. And they are very, very windy places. Windfarms can't be put by forests as the wind may be blocked and will become turbulent.

That's already a small essay -- but I figured as I wrote a rather large essay on this subject earlier this year, I'd throw in my 2p.

Bodger



Joined: 23 May 2006
Posts: 13487

PostPosted: Fri Aug 20, 10 9:32 pm    Post subject: Re: The Glorious12th Reply with quote    

Alast@ir wrote:
Grouse must be the most extensively farmed food in the U.K. but do you agree with devoting such large areas of land for such a small return in regards to bio diversity?


A lot more than just the grouse benefit form the preservation of the moors, so the question in somewhat misleading. Grouse farming ?

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32959
Location: yes
PostPosted: Sat Aug 21, 10 12:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

as the last two posts ,my local moors have been "groused" since the 19th c .before that upland farming ,before that woodland

most moors are the result of farming (some are remnants of ice ace tundra /glacial edge )but the change from mixed to sheep and grouse has produced the heather moors we know now ,quite pretty but not very biodiverse compared to the wild (if somewhat damp)wood of 10000 yrs back

KILLITnGRILLIT



Joined: 14 Sep 2006
Posts: 894
Location: Looking at a screen in the front room
PostPosted: Sat Aug 21, 10 8:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

dpack wrote:
as the last two posts ,my local moors have been ......most moors are the result of farming (some are remnants of ice ace tundra /glacial edge )but the change from mixed to sheep and grouse has produced the heather moors we know now ,quite pretty but not very biodiverse compared to the wild (if somewhat damp)wood of 10000 yrs back


Not a dig, but how far do we need to go back, 1 000, 2 000, 10 000, 1million, 6 million, 1 billion.........

Times change and animals survive or decline due to one pressure or another, how about we just get on with what we have or all go back 10 000 years ?

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32959
Location: yes
PostPosted: Sun Aug 22, 10 11:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

i recon well managed plantation and "wild" woodland could be an improvement on heather and grasses on many areas used as grouse moors

and the shooters could hunt in the woods

Bodger



Joined: 23 May 2006
Posts: 13487

PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 10 8:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

How many species would such a move endanger ? Harriers etc would bump into the trees. You're talking about the loss of a specialised habitat and the specialised species that depend on it.

Green Man



Joined: 23 Jul 2006
Posts: 5272
Location: Rural Scotland.
PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 10 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

But wouldn't it be more 'natural' if it reverted back to its natural habitat?

vegplot



Joined: 19 Apr 2007
Posts: 21297
Location: Ynys Môn
PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 10 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Alast@ir wrote:
But wouldn't it be more 'natural' if it reverted back to its natural habitat?


Why pick on the grouse moors? All of the UK, aside from some isolated areas, is unnatural.

sean
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 41705
Location: North Devon
PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 10 9:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

vegplot wrote:
Alast@ir wrote:
But wouldn't it be more 'natural' if it reverted back to its natural habitat?


Why pick on the grouse moors? All of the UK, aside from some isolated areas, is unnatural.


Indeed. Certainly in the case of The Commons which surround Torrington stopping managing them and leaving them to be 'natural' would lead to a loss of diversity.

Green Man



Joined: 23 Jul 2006
Posts: 5272
Location: Rural Scotland.
PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 10 9:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Because the return of a few hundred grouse off a few thousand acres seems the most extreme case to me, but I could be wrong.

Nick



Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 33683
Location: Hereford
PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 10 10:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

We could level and reforest Liverpool. Much greater return.

12Bore



Joined: 15 Jun 2008
Posts: 9087
Location: Paddling in the Mersey
PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 10 11:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    


vegplot



Joined: 19 Apr 2007
Posts: 21297
Location: Ynys Môn
PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 10 11:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Nick wrote:
We could level and reforest Liverpool. Much greater return.


Wait 'til we've finished building the ditch first.

12Bore



Joined: 15 Jun 2008
Posts: 9087
Location: Paddling in the Mersey
PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 10 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

vegplot wrote:
Nick wrote:
We could level and reforest Liverpool. Much greater return.


Wait 'til we've finished building the ditch first.

Just to the West of my house will fine.

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