Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Same type of forest is good for both birds and people, Swedish study finds

Date:
June 8, 2011
Source:
University of Gothenburg
Summary:
Birds and people both enjoy urban woodlands that have been cleared to just the right degree. This is the conclusion of scientists in Sweden who have carried out large-scale field experiments in urban woodlands in south-western Sweden.

Erik Heyman's studies are based on large-scale field experiments in five deciduous forest areas close to three midsize cities in south-western Sweden.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of Gothenburg

Birds and people both enjoy urban woodlands that have been cleared to just the right degree. This is the conclusion of scientists at the University of Gothenburg who have carried out large-scale field experiments in urban woodlands in south-western Sweden.

"Three out of four people want a mixture of open and untouched forest for rambling. At the same time, we can see that birds do well and continue to nest in woodlands where less than 50% has been cleared," says Erik Heyman of the Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences at the University of Gothenburg.

The natural environment close to urban areas is becoming evermore important as more people choose to live in cities. Biological diversity is relatively high in Swedish urban woodlands, while these areas are important also for recreation and outdoor activities. The woodlands must be managed correctly, in order to preserve their ecological and social values.

Erik Heyman's studies are based on large-scale field experiments in five deciduous forest areas close to three midsize cities in south-western Sweden: Alingsๅs, Borๅs and Sk๖vde. Two different types of clearance were carried out: a 90% clearance of the understory, and a 50% clearance that was carried out in a grid pattern of squares of size approximately 50 x 50 m. The two types of clearance were carried out over an area of 3-5 hectares, and areas of corresponding size were left undisturbed in each forest area as control areas.

"The number of nesting birds fell in the areas of 90% clearance, while the 50% clearance did not have any detrimental effect on the number of birds. Predation by birds had a large effect on arthropods in the understory, and this means that an important food resource for insect-eating birds is removed when the understory is cleared."

The recreational value of the forest has also been investigated by Erik Heyman in two types of experiment. In the first, photographs of the cleared forests were shown to experimental subjects, who were then asked to assess them. In the second, cameras were given to subjects, who were then asked to photograph liked and disliked places along a rambling path through the woodlands.

"Analysis of the photographs showed that both open and dense forests were appreciated, while visible traces of humans impact such as litter and evidence of clearance activity were perceived negatively. Clearance of understory and small trees can increase the recreational value of the woodlands but it should be carried out in small areas in order to create variation and avoid detrimental impact on birdlife. Forest management, permanent signposts, rubbish bins, benches, etc., should be designed to blend into the forest as far as possible.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Gothenburg. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Erik Heyman, Bengt Gunnarsson. Management effect on bird and arthropod interaction in suburban woodlands. BMC Ecology, 2011; 11 (1): 8 DOI: 10.1186/1472-6785-11-8

Cite This Page:

University of Gothenburg. "Same type of forest is good for both birds and people, Swedish study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110608081559.htm>.
University of Gothenburg. (2011, June 8). Same type of forest is good for both birds and people, Swedish study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110608081559.htm
University of Gothenburg. "Same type of forest is good for both birds and people, Swedish study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110608081559.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Earth & Climate News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Scientists Examine Colossal Squid

Raw: Scientists Examine Colossal Squid

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — Squid experts in New Zealand thawed and examined an unusual catch on Tuesday: a colossal squid. It was captured in Antarctica's remote Ross Sea in December last year and has been frozen for eight months. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — A Texas man is lucky to be alive after he and three others floated for more than a day in the Gulf of Mexico when their boat sank during a fishing trip. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Explore Shipwrecks Off Calif. Coast

Researchers Explore Shipwrecks Off Calif. Coast

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — Federal researchers are exploring more than a dozen underwater sites where they believe ships sank in the treacherous waters west of San Francisco in the decades following the Gold Rush. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Isolated N. Korea Asks For International Help With Volcano

Isolated N. Korea Asks For International Help With Volcano

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) — Mount Paektu volcano in North Korea is showing signs of life and there's not much known about it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:  

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile iPhone Android Web
    Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins