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Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Hedgerow HAP LBAP Conference, 2008 Workshop Ann Davies, Rob Wolton and Emily Ledder.

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Presentation on theme: "Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Hedgerow HAP LBAP Conference, 2008 Workshop Ann Davies, Rob Wolton and Emily Ledder."— Presentation transcript:

1 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Hedgerow HAP LBAP Conference, 2008 Workshop Ann Davies, Rob Wolton and Emily Ledder

2 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows To recap New HAP name is just Hedgerows All hedgerows with >80% cover of native trees and shrubs Revised targets – see Appendix 9 of survey handbook Favourable condition now defined – 5 attributes (size, integrity- gaps, undisturbed ground, non-natives, nutrient status) – see Appendix 9 of survey handbook Published new edition of Hedgerow Survey Handbook in April nts/hedgerow-survey-handbook.pdf nts/hedgerow-survey-handbook.pdf

3 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows This year, our focus is on: Enhancing agri-environment schemes Improving advice for farmers and advisers Encouraging more local hedgerow surveys Commissioning research in key areas Better communication with LBAPs and others Reporting progress on targets

4 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows BIGs and all that We welcome the proposal for Hedgerows to be part of the Lowland Farmland Biodiversity Integration Group (BIG), since this will help to deliver landscape scale benefits, more sustainable solutions and facilitate climate change adaptation But, we are keeping the Hedgerow HAP Steering Group going since we believe this to be a strong, effective, partnership All four countries want it to continue to be a UK Steering Group, led by Defra We now have increased responsibility for species like the hazel dormouse (more later)

5 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Targets 1 & 8 1. Maintain net extent of hedgerows 8. Increase net length of hedgerows by 800km pa between 2005 and 2010 We await results of Countryside Survey 2007 In England we are worried about decline in hedge laying and planting following introduction of Environmental Stewardship in 2005 Q & A on hedgerow planting produced We are hoping to introduce an ELS+ with capital items such as hedge laying and planting – more below

6 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Targets 2 & 7 2. Maintain number of isolated hedgerow trees 7. Increase number of young hedgerow trees to 40,000 by 2010 and 80,000 by 2015 Countryside Survey 2007 will reveal current picture in Britain Research commissioned to develop population models and to define ecological and landscape value Tree Council arranged hedgerow tree conference and continues to promote tagging Produced Q&A hedgerow tree leaflet – /NE69.pdf /NE69.pdf

7 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Target 3 Ensure hedgerows remain as rich in native woody species No specific action underway Some concern about loss of ramblers and creepers

8 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Target 4 Achieve favourable condition of 35% of hedgerows by 2010 and 50% by 2015 Only 22% in Britain in 2000, without considering nutrient enrichment Countryside Survey will be informative Local surveys suggest gaps and undisturbed ground are big issues Cross compliance and Environmental Stewardship are main remedies in England Hedgerow management film produced (more later)

9 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Target 5 Reduce proportion of land managers who trim hedges annually to 60% by 2010 Target achieved – 42% in 2006 ELS in England has been big incentive – about one third of all hedgerows in scheme Research commissioned to get better information on comparative benefits of 2 & 3 year cutting cycles, and raising cutting height each year. Research planned on changing farmer attitudes Q&A on hedgerow cutting has proved very popular dgecutting.pdf Our thanks to LBAP coordinators for help with distribution dgecutting.pdf

10 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Target 6 Halt further decline in condition of herbaceous hedgerow flora Nutrient enrichment is the big problem Cross compliance should be helping in England But loss of set-aside may be an issue Research into techniques for restoration of hedgerow flora pending Countryside Survey 2007 will establish baseline

11 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Local Hedgerow Surveys Survey of surveys underway - report available soon on Hedgelink website Many excellent local surveys now completed, with Defra grant-aid. Reports, and summary report forms, will be placed on Hedgelink website Further 8 surveys underway this year: 1. BTCV - Species Rich and Ancient Hedgerows in the Canterbury Area 2. Cumbria Biodiversity Partnership - Cumbria Hedge Survey 3. Bromley Borough - Darwins Hedgerows 4. Cheshire FWAG - Shocklach Ancient Hedge Survey 5. Devon FWAG - Devon Hedgerow Survey Project 6. Exmoor National Park - Celebrating Exmoor's Hedges 7. Bedfordshire CC - Chalk Hills Hedgerow Study 8. Three Valleys - Hedgerows of the Moss Valley

12 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Linking habitats and species With added responsibility for SAPs, we need to understand better the dependency of priority species on hedgerows. We have started to analyse links For example, 21 priority bird species use hedgerows, 13 as a primary habitat. For all 13 the condition of hedgerows is a limiting factor, and all but 2 are widespread. 16 out of the 19 farmland bird indicator species in England are associated with hedgerows, 10 as a primary habitat. Now we need to do mammals, insects, plants, etc…, and then identify a short list of those species where action from us is required

13 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Environmental Stewardship Review of Progress (England) Undertaken to check how Environmental Stewardship performing Improvements to existing options and new options identified Phase 1 introduced with new handbooks end August 2008 Phase 2 planned for 2010

14 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Phase 1: Changes to existing Entry Level Stewardship (ELS) options EB1 and EB2 Hedgerow Management No cutting period extended by one month from 31 July to 31 August Minor changes to tighten up eligibility criteria and make prescriptions clearer

15 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Phase 2: New ELS options for 2010 Protection of hedgerow trees, including tree tagging Maintenance of earth banks ELS Plus: addition of capital works (hedge laying, planting, etc)

16 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows Hedgelink New identity for the HAP group and its activities Improved communication and access to information and resources Website under construction – Will link to BARS We welcome feedback, suggestions about content, and suggestions for improvement

17 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows

18 A cut above the rest This hedgerow management DVD launched at Royal Show and presented to HRH Prince of Wales Designed to help farmers and advisers understand the hedgerow cycle, to read hedgerows, and to make informed management decisions Partnership between CPRE, Defra, National Hedgelaying Society, Natural England, RSPB and The Tree Council Clips can be viewed on and DVD available free from phone

19 Working together for the UK’s hedgerows A cut above the rest


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