Monday, March 3, 2008

Boar bash

This is one of the experiments that the Alladale team and their partners WildCRU at Oxford University have put together. Riding in the Land Rover down the Glen today, we got the scoop from Chris Sandom, a PhD student with the WildCRU program.

You can easily see the peaty soil in the first picture, taken at a road-cut for the Deanich lodge track, and begin to imagine the barrier this creates for tree regeneration. The second picture is Sus scrofus, the European wild boar. A pig by "any other other name." Smells fine, too by the way. And quite friendly.

(I like pigs. My wife says I must have been one in a past life. She does, actually, know how true that is.)

The boar easily break through the blanket bog, says Chris. In certain circumstances. Why and how and how to manage this for the benefit of native Highland forestry is a whole other problem, and the subject of Chris's dissertation, so I won't steal thunder. Durn good idea, though. Very well done experimental design and execution.

Nice job, Chris. Impressive work. Lots of very good help from the Alladale crew too.

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